Abdullah had a lead role with the Lions when healthy over the last three seasons, but was injured often and played behind Kerryon Johnson and LeGarrette Blount this year.
There were questions about whether the 5-9, 203-pound Abdullah would make the Lions roster out of training camp and he barely played once the season did get underway.
The 25-year-old Abdullah was inactive for the first four games of the season and has only touched the ball three times in three games since Week 5. He rushed for one yard in his only carry.
Over four seasons with the Lions, Abdullah rushed for 1,251 yards and six touchdowns before the Lions announced on Tuesday he was being waived Abdullah after they signed wide receiver Bruce Ellington and running back Zach Zenner.
Abdullah probably also will have trouble getting much work in the Vikings' backfield, as starter Dalvin Cook returned last Sunday after he missed several games because of a hamstring injury.
Minnesota also has Latavius Murray and rookies Mike Boone and Roc Thomas, although Thomas has been out recently with a hamstring issue.