User ID
  Forgot User ID
or Register Today!
Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Follow Us on Google+ VI Mobile Scores and Betting Odds
Betting Tools

Peterson vs. Pack has been boon for Vikings RB

New customers: Make your 1st bet, get your 2nd bet free, 100%, winnings paid in cash.
Join Now

Already have an account? Click here to view new Exclusive Rewards!

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. (AP) - Adrian Peterson rushed for 210 yards at Green Bay the first time. He was, uh, limited to 199 yards for Minnesota in the most recent meeting.

So how much more can this man do? Will the Packers be able to finally stop him with their third try?

That's an issue for this Saturday at Lambeau Field in a playoff game full of intriguing story lines, when the Vikings and Packers will renew their rivalry in the wild-card round. Peterson carried the Vikings into the postseason with another standout performance in Sunday's 37-34 victory, even though the Packers continually sent a safety up to the line to crowd his running lanes as if he was on a blitz.

``They were a lot more physical in that game than they had been before,'' Vikings fullback Jerome Felton said. ``I think they were trying to box everything and keep it in the middle. I just remember thinking, `Man, they're coming downhill.' But I think we're just such a physical team that it wears on people. So he didn't have the 80-yard run, and he still had 200 yards rushing.''

Peterson had an 82-yard touchdown sprint on Dec. 2 during the 23-14 defeat in Green Bay, but his longest run on Sunday was 28 yards.

``I look forward to us having a better performance on defense,'' Packers coach Mike McCarthy said.

The Vikings, naturally, were anticipating more adjustments.

``I'm sure they'll come up with another wrinkle when we play them again,'' coach Leslie Frazier said.

One year ago on New Year's Eve, Peterson was lying in a hospital bed, hooked up to tubes and wires with a glazed look on his face, a carton of ice cream clutched in his hand, in the first hours after reconstructive surgery on his left knee. He sent that photo of that scene on Twitter, a stark contrast to the raucous stadium he helped ignite Sunday by spinning around, racing past and running through the Packers.

He needed a franchise-record 34 carries to get to those 199 yards, but five of those attempts went for no gain and five more lost yards. That proved again just how difficult it is to stop him, given the ferocity and determination he's running with, and the confidence with which the Vikings are blocking for him. Peterson finished 9 yards short of becoming the NFL's all-time leading single-season rusher, but even though the total resets next season he vowed to pass Eric Dickerson someday.

``God willing, I'll get it next year, or at least make it close,'' Peterson said.

Felton, picked for the Pro Bowl for his blocking prowess after signing a one-year contract, told Peterson after Sunday's game he'd break the record in 2013 if Felton is brought back.

All those individual accolades will be put in the background until next season, though. The playoffs are here.

``Once you get in, anything can happen. It's been done before. There's a precedent set for teams like this getting on a roll. Hopefully we can keep it going and become one of those teams,'' left guard Charlie Johnson said.

The Vikings haven't won an outdoor game this year, but their formula for winning is designed to work in winter: pounding Peterson into the line and relying on the defense to rack up sacks and force a turnover or two.

``When your players have an identity and they know what that identity is, they tend to think a little bit less about what some of the other implications or ramifications can be with the weather,'' Frazier said. ``They know mentally that this is what we are going to focus on no matter the condition. I think it has to be an advantage for you.''

Christian Ponder can't escape responsibility, though. Coming off a three-touchdown, no-turnover game, he'll need to complete enough third-down throws and medium-to-long-range passes to supplement Peterson's work on the ground.

``Green Bay had to play honest. They had to respect the pass game and when we're doing that, we're playing balanced football, we're a tough team to beat,'' Peterson said on Sunday.

NOTES: CB Antoine Winfield's status for Saturday's game is in question, after he aggravated his broken right hand Sunday and sat out most of the afternoon. His hand was swollen badly afterward, and Frazier said Winfield ``was in quite a bit of pain.'' ... DE Brian Robison played through a sprained right shoulder and finished the season with a career-high 8 1/2 sacks, one of which forced a fumble by Aaron Rodgers the Vikings recovered to set up a touchdown. ... Though the dates won't be set until April, the Vikings have their 2013 opponents lined up. Beyond the usual division games, they'll host Philadelphia (4-12 this year), Washington (10-6), Carolina (7-9), Cleveland (5-11) plus Pittsburgh (8-8) in London. They'll travel to Dallas (8-8), the New York Giants (9-7), Seattle (11-5), Baltimore (10-6) and Cincinnati (10-6).


Follow Dave Campbell on Twitter:


Online: and

The Associated Press News Service

Copyright 2015
The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved

David: Total Talk - Thanksgiving
Sportsbook: Thursday's Top Action
Rogers: Public Fades - Week 12
Marshall: Tech Trends - Week 12
Nelson: Close Calls - Week 11
Rams' Bailey shot, in critical condition
JPP happy to be alive after accident
Eagles hoping to halt 'panic' with win
Lynch undergoes abdominal surgery
Why Buy Picks From
NFL Pro Football Handicapper Sports Picks Records
NFL Hot Streaks
5-2 Sun., 14-4 Run, 10-1 Mondays
41-20 Last 61 Picks, +1,655 TY
3-0 L2 Thurs., 11-3 L14, 16-6 L22
18-8 Last 26 NFL Streak
4-0 Run, 10-2 L12 Guarantees
4-1 Sunday, 22-10 L32 Picks
4-1 L5 Picks, 17-9 L5 Sundays
9-3 L12, 11-4 L15 Selections
5-1 Last 6 Guaranteed Plays
16-6 L4 Sundays, 26-12 +1,328 L38
10-5 Last 15 G-Plays
5-2 Last 7 NFL Picks
3-1 Record Sunday
5-1 Last 6 NFL Guarantees
NFL Pro Football Expert Sports Picks - Philadelphia Eagles at Detroit Lions
Money Leaders
Handicapper Money
Marc Lawrence + 1655
Joe Nelson + 1138
Antony Dinero + 1008
Last Week's Leaders
Handicapper Money
ASA + 300
Michael Black + 300
Andy Iskoe + 295
Percentage Leaders
Handicapper Pct
Marc Lawrence 64 %
Joe Nelson 63 %
Scott Pritchard 63 %
Guaranteed Leaders
Handicapper Money
Joe Nelson + 558
Scott Pritchard + 525
Vince Akins + 415
Over-Under Leaders
Handicapper Money
Jimmy Boyd + 363
Michael Black + 306
Scott Pritchard + 300
Member Leaders
Handicapper Money
Paul Bovi + 809
Antony Dinero + 706
Marc Lawrence + 660
corner graphic
With a VI Gold Membership, you can SAVE 10% off a Live Odds subscription, SAVE 20% off Daily Pick packages, and receive access to up to 1,000 Member Plays each month!
VI Gold Membership