Lions vs. Vikings: Expect more from Peterson

Rod Beard
The Detroit News

Rod Beard of The Detroit News breaks down Sunday's Lions-Vikings game at TCF Bank Stadium (1 p.m., Fox, 97.1).

Vikings to watch

Adrian Peterson, RB: He had 31 yards on 10 carries — very un-Peterson numbers — in the opener against the 49ers. After missing most of last season, he’ll likely see more touches. He averages 105 yards against the Lions in 12 career games

Teddy Bridgewater, QB: In his second year, he lost both games to the Lions last season. In the second meeting, he went 31-for-41 for 315 yards and a TD.

Harrison Smith, S: He tied for the team lead with 71 tackles last season and leads a defense that allowed 395 yards to the 49ers.


Right plan: Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said they got away from giving the ball to RB Adrian Peterson against the 49ers. That should increase, just to take some pressure off QB Teddy Bridgewater in the passing game.

Forgettable season: Under  Bridgewater (Peterson), the Vikings won one divisional game last season, topping the Bears in the season finale.

Nice addition: Zimmer said Mike Wallace adds “another quality speed receiver” to open things up in other areas of the offense. The Lions will have to account for him, as he led the Vikings with six catches in the opener.

Plain ugly: After the 20-3 loss to the 49ers, Vikings coach Mike Zimmer called it one of the worst showings in his two seasons.

Critical game: Both teams are trying to avoid going 0-2. Teams that start 0-2 have about a 12-percent chance to make the playoffs.

Facts and figures

* The Lions have won three of the last four in the series, including both matchups last season. The only Vikings win was 14-13 in the 2013 finale.

* The Vikings are 38-14-1 at home against the Lions, the best winning percentage at home against any team in the NFC North.

* QB Teddy Bridgewater completed 72 percent of his passes against the 49ers, the fourth-highest total among NFC quarterbacks.

* Minnesota’s defense allowed 230 yards rushing to the 49ers, 168 yards and 2 TDs from Carlos Hyde.

* The Vikings went 1-for-9 on third-down conversions against the 49ers and 0-for-2 on fourth-down attempts.