OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) A game billed as a matchup between emerging second-year quarterbacks Teddy Bridgewater and Derek Carr was overshadowed by a more established star.
Adrian Peterson ran for 203 yards and a touchdown in his record-tying sixth career 200-yard game, Cordarrelle Patterson returned a kick 93 yards for a score and the Vikings beat the Oakland Raiders 30-14 on Sunday to take over sole possession of first place in the NFC North.
Peterson has four straight games with at least 100 yards and leads the NFL with 961 yards on the ground this season. Peterson also tied O.J. Simpson with his sixth 200-yard game, getting there with an 80-yard TD in the closing minutes.
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”I was wired up,” Peterson said. ”Even after that play, I could have gone longer. That’s a good thing. It makes me feel good to know in a tough-fought game, even after making the big play I still was ready and wired to go more if we needed it.”
Bridgewater threw a touchdown pass, and the Vikings (7-2) held the Raiders’ potent offense in check. Minnesota has won five straight games heading into next week’s division showdown at home with Green Bay (6-3).
Carr threw for 302 yards and two touchdowns for Oakland, but also was intercepted twice. The Raiders (4-5) lost their second straight game to fall further behind in the AFC playoff race.
”We lost a game. We’re not about to go crazy,” left tackle Donald Penn said. ”There’s no panic at all, none of that at all. We’re positive and upbeat. We’re a little sad because we know we left a lot out on the field today.”
Here are some other takeaways from Minnesota’s win:
MOMENTUM CHANGER: The Raiders erased a 13-0 deficit with two touchdown passes from Carr in the second quarter. The lead lasted just 13 seconds. Patterson bobbled a squib kick from Sebastian Janikowski before taking it back all the way untouched for his third career kick return touchdown, making it 20-14 at the break.
”It was certainly a momentum breaker,” Raiders coach Jack Del Rio said. ”We had really captured the momentum and were playing well at that time so it was definitely a blow.”
HEALTHY HEAD: Bridgewater showed no ill effects from the concussion that knocked him out of last week’s win over St. Louis. He was limited early in the week in practice and not cleared to play until Friday. He completed 14 of 22 passes for 140 yards and scrambled for 23 more as he was able to avoid some of the heavy pressure applied by the Raiders.
”Last week is in the past,” he said. ”I can’t let one play or one hit determine the way I play the next game. I’m still going to continue to play the game the way I play it.”
RUN TO DAYLIGHT: The run defense had been the strength for the Raiders early in the season. But after big days by Pittsburgh’s DeAngelo Williams and Peterson the past two weeks, that has all changed. Oakland has allowed 458 yards rushing the past two games after giving up just 453 the previous six. Peterson had 137 of his yards in the fourth quarter.
”You have to be sharp the whole game with him,” linebacker Malcolm Smith said. ”Obviously, he made us pay. We just have to be sharper, more detailed and just finish better. Obviously, that’s been kind of our downfall.”
TRAVELING SHOW: Minnesota got its first win in the Pacific Time Zone since beating San Francisco in 2007. The Vikings had lost their last four trips to the West Coast, including a 20-3 loss to San Francisco to open the season.
”People always say you can’t win on the road, you can’t do this, but it’s not about where you play, it’s about how you play,” coach Mike Zimmer said.
TOUGH TACKLE: Vikings safety Antone Exum Jr. tackled a fan who ran onto the field before a kickoff in the fourth quarter. Exum held the fan down long enough for security to apprehend him.
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