It’s a "good news, bad news" day for the Minnesota Vikings.
First the good news.
Dan Wiederer of the Minneapolis Star Tribune has reported that Adrian Peterson was back on the practice field. When you practice on Thursday, odds are you can play on Sunday. Barring some sort of setback, expect Peterson to suit up on Sunday against the Detroit Lions.
Now for the bad news…
For the second day in a row, rookie QB Christian Ponder did not practice with a hip pointer, according to the Star Tribune. He was drilled by the helmet of a Bronco defender in the first quarter and dealt with the injury for the rest of the game. Not bad, considering he threw for a career-high 381 yards and three touchdowns.
If he can’t go, it will be Joe Webb under center, the third QB to start for the Vikings this season. Losing Peterson is one thing; Toby Gerhart is a decent backup. He ran for over 90 yards on 4.3 yards per carry.
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Without Ponder…the pass offense is screwed. Webb is more of a glorified receiver than anything else. Last year, he tossed for 469 yards in three starts with a grand total of zero touchdowns and three interceptions.
As for A.P, it’s great news for his fantasy value. With Webb under center he would get a minimum of 20 carries. The entire offensive load would fall on his shoulders.
This is why you take care of your franchise running back. Peterson got paid before the season started, and is willing to come back to play for a 2-10 team at less than 100 percent. Meanwhile, Matt Forte will take his sweet time coming back from his injury as he waits for the Bears to give him a long-term deal.
The Lions are 22nd against the run and are going to be without Ndamukong Suh again. In his first meeting against the Lions, Peterson ran for 78 yards at 4.6 yards per carry with a touchdown and added another 19 yards receiving.
Peterson returns to must-start status.