Plenty goes right in Vikings win

  • Article by: DAN WIEDERER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: November 12, 2012 - 7:03 AM

Christian Ponder quieted skeptics, Adrian Peterson wowed everyone and the defense racked up sacks and takeaways.

Everywhere you looked the euphoria spread.

Following Sunday’s 34-24 win over Detroit at Mall of America Field, just about everybody within the Vikings organization had the look of a theme park mascot, their grins wide, bright and seemingly permanent.

Head coach Leslie Frazier took the podium, beaming because his team had again proven resilient, undeterred by a two-game losing streak that stirred up a hurricane of outside negativity.
Instead of drowning under the crashing waves of criticism, the Vikings convinced themselves they were better than Detroit, then proved it with enough big plays to offset their sloppy lapses.

Rookie receiver Jarius Wright? His smile was one of eagerness. After waiting until Week 10 just to be active for the first time — a promotion that came because Percy Harvin couldn’t play on his sprained ankle — Wright made an immediate impact. On his first series, he delivered a 54-yard reception and a 3-yard TD catch.

Never mind that during rehearsal for that deep pass Friday, Wright dropped the ball, a mistake he admits shook him.

“I was like, 'I can’t miss my moment,’ ” he said.

When the lights came on, he didn’t.

Of course, the Vikings took their biggest smiles Sunday from the play of Adrian Peterson, who might be having the most remarkable season of any player in the NFL right now.

For the fourth consecutive game, Peterson topped 100 yards rushing, this time racking up 171 on 27 carries.

No run was bigger than his 61-yard touchdown explosion with 8:06 left, the insurance score the Vikings so badly needed, providing a 31-17 lead as Detroit fueled up for one of its trademarked fourth-quarter rallies.

To that end, Peterson played the role of closer, touching the ball on nine of the Vikings’ first 12 fourth-quarter snaps and aiding three consecutive scoring drives.

The Lions’ comeback was not to be. Peterson’s is only picking up steam.

The running back’s impressive surge — he has 629 yards over the past four games — now comes with a frightening promise.

“I’m going to come back stronger and better after the bye,” Peterson vowed.

If losses to Tampa Bay and Seattle produced major questions about the strength of the run defense and the mercurial confidence of quarterback Christian Ponder, the only doubt to surface Sunday surrounded whether Peterson really had major knee surgery in December.

“I’m not totally sure if he did or not,” left guard Charlie Johnson joked. “I’d like to think we do our job up front to spring him. But there are so many times he makes us look good. The guy’s amazing.”

With Harvin out, Peterson’s big day proved timely. But Sunday’s win was far from a one-man show.
So many players provided big plays. Such as Chad Greenway’s first-quarter interception, a pass he tore out of tight end Brandon Pettigrew’s hands. That allowed the Vikings to steal three points, even with an ensuing offensive series that lost 5 yards.

There were also the nine receivers Ponder completed passes to. That came as part of a 24-for-32, 221-yard, two-TD effort.

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St. Louis - WP: L. Lynn 4 FINAL
Washington - LP: J. Zimmermann 3
Toronto - WP: M. Buehrle 5 FINAL
Cleveland - LP: C. Kluber 0
LA Angels - LP: C. Wilson 2 FINAL
Detroit - WP: M. Scherzer 5
Baltimore - LP: B. Norris 2 FINAL
Boston - WP: J. Tazawa 4
Minnesota - LP: K. Correia 4 FINAL
Kansas City - WP: B. Chen 5
Cincinnati - LP: T. Cingrani 4 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - WP: E. Jackson 8
Houston - LP: C. Qualls 3 FINAL
Oakland - WP: D. Otero 4
Milwaukee 4 Bottom 4th Inning
Pittsburgh 1
Atlanta 2 Bottom 3rd Inning
NY Mets 1
NY Yankees 0 Top 4th Inning
Tampa Bay 4
Seattle 0 Bottom 4th Inning
Miami 1
Chicago WSox 0 Top 1st Inning
Texas 0
Philadelphia - K. Kendrick 7:10 PM
Colorado - J. Lyles
Arizona - M. Bolsinger 7:10 PM
Los Angeles - D. Haren
San Francisco - T. Hudson 7:40 PM
San Diego - E. Stults
Brooklyn 94 FINAL
Toronto 87
Golden State 109 FINAL
LA Clippers 105
Atlanta 46 2nd Qtr 1:10
Indiana 49
Memphis 8:30 PM
Oklahoma City
Chicago 3 FINAL(OT)
St. Louis 4
Columbus 1 2nd Prd
Pittsburgh 3
Minnesota 8:30 PM
Colorado
Houston 0 FINAL
Philadelphia 0
New England 1 FINAL
Chicago 1
San Jose 0 FINAL
Colorado 0
Los Angeles 1 2nd Half
Vancouver FC 0
D.C. 0 1st Half 25:00
Columbus 0
Toronto FC 7:30 PM
FC Dallas
Montreal 7:30 PM
Sporting Kansas City
Portland 8:30 PM
Real Salt Lake
Seattle 9:30 PM
Chivas USA
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Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2013 preseason     
Aug 9 - vs. Houston 7 pmX27-13
Aug 16 - at Buffalo 6 pmX20-16
Aug 25 - at San Francisco 7 pmX34-14
Aug 29 - vs. Tennessee 7 pmX24-23
2013 regular season     
Sep 8 - at Detroit NoonX34-24
Sep 15 - at Chicago NoonX31-30
Sep 22 - vs. Cleveland NoonX31-27
Sep 29 - vs. Pittsburgh (in London) NoonX34-27
Oct 6 - Bye
Oct 13 - vs. Carolina NoonX35-10
Oct 21 - at. NY Giants 7:40 pmX23-7
Oct 27 - vs. Green Bay 7:30 pmX44-31
Nov 3 - at Dallas NoonX27-23
Nov 7 - vs. Washington 7:25 pmX34-27
Nov 17 - at Seattle 3:25 pmX41-20
Nov. 24 - at Green Bay Noon26-26
Dec 1 - vs. Chicago NoonX23-20
Dec 8 - at Baltimore NoonX29-26
Dec 15 - vs. Philadelphia NoonX48-30
Dec 22 - at Cincinnati NoonX42-14
Dec 29 - vs. Detroit NoonX14-13

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