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EXHALE.


Thoughts by: Matthew Deery
www.disputedknowledge.com

The Minnesota Vikings gave all their faithful fans some nervous jitters as the high octane offense sputtered through many drives in the first half of the Week One this past week. While I hope no fans died while holding their breath waiting for a spark on offense (it didn't happen until the third quarter) the second half finally brought out the punishing behavior of Adrian Peterson and the blazing speed of Percy Harvin. I am going to say right now, Percy Harvin is a beast and is going to have a monster rookie season. Can you say offensive rookie of the year??

Brett Favre started the game solid only missing a few passes, but was only throwing short passes and screens. AP started off sluggish with only 25 first half yards which translates into a very dim looking offense. The offense not only looked mediocre but the failure to capitalize on a first and goal situation had me thinking this was the same Vikings team of the past 5 years. First and goal, with one of the best offensive lines in the league, THE best running back in the league and we settle for a Ryan Longwell field goal.

The first half did feature success for the Vikings consistent defense minus the hiccup of allowing Jousha Cribbs to scamper a punt to the end zone in the waning moments of the first half. Kevin and Pat Williams looked as disruptive as ever, with the possibility that Kevin looks even more dangerous than years past. He was all over the Browns offensive radar with crash landings in Brady Quinn's face mask.

I also want to comment on the return of "the monster in the middle" named E.J. Henderson. Last season after week 4 when E.J. went out for the season the line backing core really missed the presence of their defenses most dominant force (Yes, I said it...E.J. is the best player on the Vikings defense). E.J. looked back to his old form driving through blocks for sacks and tackles while holding down the middle on pass defense.
Jared Allen was kept at bay; but also keep in mind he was going against one of the best left tackles in the league matching up against the 6'6" 312 pound Joe Thomas. Thomas has been in the NFL for 2 years and has been to as many Pro Bowls. So don't worry, the mullet haired freak named Jared Allen will be rounding up some cattle in the form of NFL quarterbacks.

It is obvious now that I have to talk about the engine of the Vikings football team named "The Diesel." Vikings running backs coach Eric Bieniemy was especially harsh to AP and his below average performance in the first half of the Browns game. It is not hard to say that AP got the message with a second half consisting of 155 yards and 2 scores, not to mention one that will go down in highlight reels for decades to come. This kid is special...watch this play to become a believer.

If AP can stay healthy all season mark my words he will break all kinds of records in the next 16 weeks. More than 2,000 yards?? It's possible. 28 or more touchdowns? It's possible. When I went to school at Kansas State I got to watch AP walk all over the Wildcat defense in person and I knew then he was a ridiculous talent bound for the NFL. When he was left all the way til the 7th pick in the 2006 draft I could not believe the Vikings luck, this monster would be wearing purple.
All Vikings fans should consider themselves truly blessed to be able to watch this young man rip apart NFL defenses and record books...all while being a perfect model of humility for all he has accomplished.

Lastly, I will finish on this note of Peterson's impact on our very organization. On Sunday with 180 rushing yards AP put his name once again on the Vikings best single game rushing totals. Here is the complete list, notice a pattern?

TOP 5 SINGLE GAME RUSHING TOTALS FOR THE MINNESOTA VIKINGS:

296 yards (NFL record) Adrian Peterson vs. San Diego, Nov. 4, 2007

224 yards Adrian Peterson at Chicago, Oct. 14, 2007

200 yards Chuck Foreman at. Philadelphia, Oct. 24, 1976

192 yards Adrian Peterson vs. Green Bay, Nov. 9, 2008

180 yards Adrian Peterson at. Cleveland, Sunday

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