Vikings win home opener, lose Petersen 19 Sep 16

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Aaron Rodgers has two NFL MVP awards and one Super Bowl ring, and he’s in his ninth season as the starter for Green Bay.

Sam Bradford was never on a winning team over his first six years in the league. He had 15 days to learn Minnesota’s offense, then lost his Hall of Fame caliber running back to injury in the third quarter.

Guess who was the more productive quarterback on Sunday night?

Bradford’s debut was almost as dazzling as the new $1.1 billion building itself. He completed 22 of 31 passes for 286 yards, two touchdowns and no turnovers to lead the Vikings to a 17-14 victory over the Packers.

The new guy was sharp, though, and that matters a lot for the Vikings and their Super Bowl aspirations that took a hit when Teddy Bridgewater went down on August 30th with a massive injury to his left knee. That triggered the bold trade with Philadelphia to bring in Bradford.

Bradford and emerging weapon Stefon Diggs moved the ball just enough, and the defense did the rest, harassing Rodgers for five sacks and two fourth-quarter turnovers that quashed the comeback and sent the crowd of 66,813 into a deafening frenzy in celebration of the first regular season game at U.S. Bank Stadium.

 

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The regular season opening of the Minnesota Vikings’ gleaming new $1.1 billion stadium was truly a grand one, filled with gray-haired legends, white-hot pyrotechnics and some purple rain for good measure.

And noise. Lots and lots of noise.

The Vikings opened U.S. Bank Stadium in earnest on Sunday night with a 17-14 victory over NFC North rival Green Bay, the culmination of a decade-long struggle to replace the drab and dingy Metrodome.

The fixed-roof beauty has already hosted a soccer game, a couple of concerts and two preseason football games. But this was its first truly big moment, with a showdown against the hated Packers in front of a primetime, national television audience serving as the perfect backdrop.

There were more than 20 stars from the team’s proud past in attendance, including the entire Purple People Eaters defensive line that led the Vikings to four Super Bowls in the 1960s and ’70s. Hall of Famers Fran Tarkenton, Randall McDaniel and Cris Carter were there, too, and beloved former coach Bud Grant blew the gjallahorn to welcome the team to the field.

Pregame festivities included a huge party on the commons area in front of the stadium with live music for a crowd of thousands that piled into downtown Minneapolis hours before kickoff. As the game grew closer, the world’s largest pivoting glass doors opened on the west side of the stadium to allow nearly 67,000 fans to stream in, and the Vikings showed a video featuring Thor Bjornsson — The Mountain from “Game of Thrones” — who helped introduce a new cheer based on an Icelandic war chant.

 

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Minnesota Vikings star running back Adrian Peterson left in the third quarter against Green Bay with an injured right knee.

Peterson was injured after a 5-yard run late in the third quarter. He was not able to put any pressure on his leg has he hobbled off the field and needed to be helped back to the locker room for further testing. Upon arriving in the locker room, Peterson was quickly ruled out for the rest of Sunday night.

Peterson tore the ACL in his left knee in the second-to-last game of the 2011 season.

He was on crutches after the game, wearing a brace on his right leg. Coach Mike Zimmer said he was told the injury had “calmed down.”

“He might miss a week. I don’t know if he will or not,” Zimmer said.

Peterson finished the game with just 19 yards on 12 carries against the Packers.