The Free Press, Mankato, MN

Vikings News

August 21, 2013

Will Adrian Peterson be the savior?

Vikings' starting offense has struggled mightily without AP

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"If you're an offensive player, we definitely want to take some steps forward," Peterson said. The Vikings have averaged only 14 first downs and 276 yards over the first two games, though that includes all of the time logged by backups and long shots trying to make the team.

Ponder is 6 for 14 for 68 yards and one interception. His passer rating is 28.3.

So this next exhibition will be a valuable opportunity for Ponder to continue trying to establish a rhythm with Jennings, rookie Cordarrelle Patterson and the rest of his receivers. Don't expect a polished product either, Jennings said.

"Kinks will never completely be ironed out," he said. "There will always be a new wrinkle that we put in that we're going to be trying to perfect. Just our relationship, our chemistry, we're going to try to perfect that forever."

The Vikings offense gets its shot at redemption on national TV Sunday night as the take on defending Super Bowl runner-up San Francisco. The game will be televised from Candlestick Park on NBC beginning at 7 p.m. CST.

This will likely be the final dress rehearsal for most of the starters on both offense and defense. The fourth and final preseason game is usually reserved for rookies and young players trying to make the final roster.

NOTES: The finalists for the punt returner role are incumbent Marcus Sherels and fellow CB Bobby Felder, according to special teams coordinator Mike Priefer. The Vikings have been grooming Patterson for that job, too, but they're trying to narrow his focus for now. ... DT Sharrif Floyd's minor left knee operation went fine, Frazier said, and he's expected to be ready for the first week of the regular season. ... In addition to Floyd and FB Jerome Felton, who's out for the rest of August recovering from an appendectomy, the only other significant player held out of practice Wednesday was WR Jarius Wright with concussion symptoms.

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