Minnesota Vikings scouting report: Adrian Peterson remains a serious threat : Packers Insider

Minnesota Vikings scouting report: Adrian Peterson remains a serious threat

November 16, 2010 by  
Filed under News

Nov 16, 2010 ~ by Pete Dougherty, Press-Gazette

~Following is a scouting report of the Minnesota Vikings based on interviews with several coaches and scouts whose teams recently have played the 3-6 Vikings:

Run offense: As long as halfback Adrian Peterson is healthy, which he appears to be, he’s one of the most dangerous runners in the NFL. Peterson (6-feet-1, 217 pounds) has a complete package of speed and power, and even after gaining only 51 yards on a 3.0-yard average last week against Chicago, he’s still the NFL’s No. 2 rusher (908 yards, 4.6-yard average).

Adrian Peterson is still capable of taking over a game at any moment, even though the Viking OL is not as good as it once was.

The Vikings’ offensive line is in decline — left guard Steve Hutchinson no longer plays at a Pro Bowl level at age 33, left tackle Bryant McKinnie is losing mobility at age 31 and the Vikings have been having problems at center since Matt Birk left before the 2009 season. Birk’s successor, John Sullivan, was unable to finish the game last week because of a calf injury. Rookie Toby Gerhart, a second-round pick, has run a little better the past few weeks but has been a disappointment (3.6-yard average, long run of 11 yards).

Pass offense: The Vikings, who rank No. 27 in the NFL in scoring, are in even worse shape at receiver than when they played at Lambeau Field on Oct. 24. Two weeks ago they waived Randy Moss, and for whatever internal problems he caused, he at least represented a deep threat that scared defenses and opened the field for others. Receiver Percy Harvin has been Brett Favre’s favorite target, but he had a migraine last week that cost him practice time and then injured his ankle against Chicago and was unable to return. If he can’t play Sunday, the Vikings have major problems, because he’s their best playmaker (a team high 44 catches, four touchdown receptions). Sidney Rice, who was Favre’s favorite target last year (83 catches), hasn’t played all season after undergoing hip surgery in August, and though he might return this week won’t be in midseason form. Bernard Berrien has had no chemistry with Favre (18 receptions, 9.8-yard average) and has a groin injury that caused him to bench himself about 1½ hours before last week’s kickoff. Tight end Visanthe Shiancoe (28 catches, 12.9-yard average) can get downfield but last week against Chicago worked mainly underneath routes (four catches, 29 yards). Depending on the health of Harvin, Berrian and Rice, the Vikings might have to lean heavily on or even start Greg Lewis (12 receptions, 11.3-yard average) and Greg Camarillo (11 receptions, 12.6-yard average), who are pedestrian possession receivers. Favre also is playing behind an offensive line — especially tackles McKinnie on the left side and Phil Loadholt on the right — that’s had trouble protecting. The Vikings rank No. 16 in the NFL in sacks percentage even though Favre is one of the best in the NFL at getting rid of the ball. Favre can still wing it with the best of them but is taking as many chances as ever and leads the league in interceptions (16).

Run defense: Full story HERE


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