News | Minnesota Vikings –

Adrian Peterson: Week 2 wasn't 'best foot forward'

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — Adrian Peterson had run for 134 yards and gained 58 more on two catches, but something still stuck in his craw.

Sure, he turned a desperation flip from Teddy Bridgewater into a 49-yard gain, but he didn't finish the play the way he wanted.

Peterson responded by putting himself through rigorous sprints the following Tuesday, which is normally a day of rest and recovery for players.

"I'm a better player than I was in Week 2 when I played those guys. So I'm even more excited about that," Peterson said Thursday. "I don't know what they're thinking over there, but I know what I'm thinking and I don't feel like my best foot was forward when we played those guys last time so I think this will be an opportunity to put my best foot forward."

Peterson opened the season in 28th place with 10,190 rushing yards all-time and has moved up to 23rd with 10,622.

"It feels good. It lets you know the work you are putting in is paying off and kind of reminds you how blessed you are," Peterson said. "When you look at the names left to be passed, it's even more motivating to continue to do what you are doing."

Are there names ahead of him that he's thinking of passing?

"O.J. Simpson [11,236], Jim Brown [12,312], Barry Sanders [15,269], Eric Dickerson [13,259]," Peterson answered, adding, "There's a lot of guys on there."

Emmitt Smith has the NFL career record with 18,355 (1990-2004).

After Peterson posted back-to-back triple digit rushing totals against the Lions and Chargers, the Broncos and Chiefs were able to better contain him, except for a 48-yard TD run on fourth-and-1 in Denver and a 23-yard gain against Kansas City.

A considerable part to the Chiefs strategy were run blitzes that caused negative rush attempts. The Vikings wouldn't be surprised if the Lions incorporate a similar tactic but will try to make Detroit pay for being overly aggressive.

"The thing about it, and it's the same thing with me, I've got some run blitzes that we run," Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer said. "If you mess it up, it's got a chance to go big. That's what happened at Denver against us."

Lions Head Coach Jim Caldwell said, "It's very difficult to hold (Peterson) down."

"Guys that play with the kind of spirit and has the power and drive and quickness that he has, he's got the entire package," Caldwell said. "Those guys are tough to keep at bay. He's a great player, and great players typically play well, regardless of the setting."

Peterson has been working through a finger injury he suffered against the Chiefs that has caused him to be listed as limited in practice the past two days.

Zimmer told beat writers he doesn't believe the finger will cause problems with ball security.

"We keep talking to him about it and making sure we keep addressing it," Zimmer said. "I don't think, the part that he's got nicked really doesn't have anything to do with the ball."

Peterson and Detroit receiver Calvin Johnson, who were picked 7th and 2nd overall, respectively, in the 2007 NFL Draft are the subject of this week's Ticketmaster Hot Matchup. Johnson has 10,893 receiving yards.

"He's the caliber of player you don't see often, just at a different position," Peterson said.

Griffen returns: Everson Griffen returned to practice Thursday after missing Sunday's game because of an illness.

Zimmer said Griffen, who leads the Vikings with 3.0 sacks and 18 quarterback hurries, "looked good today, practiced hard, is ready to go."

Griffen was credited with five quarterback hurries and recorded a sack when Minnesota hosted Detroit in Week 2.

While Griffen returned and fully participated Thursday, defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd (ankle/knee) did not participate for a second day in a row. Zimmer said the injury occurred during Sunday's game but Floyd finished the contest.

If Floyd is unable to go, Tom Johnson will likely be the first player the Vikings deploy.

"I think Tom has played good all year," Zimmer said. "He did a great job in the preseason and did a good job all year. I think we should be fine."

Plug and play: Kenrick Ellis, who was signed Tuesday when Shamar Stephen was placed on injured reserve also might be called on at the other defensive tackle spot when Linval Joseph is given a break.

Although Ellis has only practiced twice in purple, Zimmer had prior looks when he was Cincinnati's Defensive Coordinator and Ellis was on the New York Jets.

"I think he's got a chance to be a pretty good nose tackle. He's strong, has got good quickness, is massive and he moves good," Zimmer said. "That position, there's not a lot of learning and the system is similar to what he's had before, so he's more learning the stunts and blitzes and things like that."

Fall break suits Walsh: Vikings kicker Blair Walsh said he used the bye week to visit the University of Georgia to practice kicking at the college's facility.

"It was good to hit some balls away from here and sort of refresh my game. I think it helped," Walsh said. "No coaches, no cameras, just sort of back to basics and ripping the ball. It felt good."

Walsh is 9-for-11 on field goals and 9-for-10 from the new extra point length of 33 yards this season.

"He's hitting the ball well. He had a good two days of practice during the bye week and he had a good week of practice last week," Special Teams Coordinator Mike Priefer said. "He's starting to get his confidence back, I think he felt really good about the game and obviously he kicked well, he kicked off well and he was a huge factor in that win."

Walsh has 16 touchbacks on 24 adjusted kickoffs this season (66.7 percent) and has booted the ball into the end zone 23 times (95.8 percent). He and the kick coverage team rank 10th in the NFL at opponents' starting field position after kickoffs (20.3 yard line).

Injury reports: In addition to Floyd, Justin Trattou (foot) did not participate Thursday. Terence Newman (ankle), T.J. Clemmings (knee), Matt Asiata (ribs) and Adrian Peterson (finger) were limited at practice Thursday. Jarius Wright (hand) and Charles Johnson (ribs) fully participated for a second straight day. Captain Munnerlyn was added to the report with a thumb injury Thursday but fully participated. For the Lions: LB DeAndre Levy (hip), TE Brandon Pettigrew (knee/elbow) and CB Josh Wilson (concussion) did not participate for a second straight day. S James Ihedigbo (quad), P Sam Martin (left knee), RB Theo Riddick (groin) and RB Joique Bell (ankle) were limited. Haloti Ngata (calf), LB Josh Bynes (hip), TE Eric Ebron (knee), DE Jason Jones (neck) and Tahir Whitehead (s

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.