While their offense was limited to 43 plays, they ran the ball 14 times on first down while Donovan McNabb added a first-down scramble and passed the ball only four times on first down.
"We felt like for sure there were some things that we could have done a little bit differently in our approach and some of that you get when you look back at a ballgame," Vikings coach Leslie Frazier said. "There's some natural second-guessing, especially if you lose the ball game, so that comes with it to a degree, but there were some things that we could have done differently that may have helped us and hopefully this weekend we'll get some of those things taken care of."
Even Peterson, who is never shy about his desire to carry the ball as much as possible while maintaining a team-first attitude, thought the Vikings could have thrown the ball more or at least done better in the passing game. The idea is that a more balanced attack could have resulted in staying on the field longer.
"I feel like we ran the ball pretty good. I stick to my job, and that's whatever play-call is called do my best to go out and execute," said Peterson, who averaged 6.1 yards on 16 carries.
"I think we were running the ball pretty good. Got to get the passing game going a little more."
The Vikings had one 14-play drive, and besides that their longest drive was six plays. In drives in which they took an offensive snap (thereby eliminating Percy Harvin's kickoff return to start the game), they had six series that consisted of three or fewer plays.
There is delicate balance between wanting to use Peterson as much as possible and trying to keep the defenses guessing.
"Everything that we do is based on getting him going because it opens up so many things for our offense," Frazier said. "There has to be balance and we understand that and because of the attention that is paid to Adrian, it opens up other opportunities for other players on our offense and we have to take advantage of that. I don't think that's going to change. People have to pay attention to Adrian Peterson and one of the ways they do that is having an extra guy in the box in the run game and gives us other opportunities, and we have to take advantage."
BUCKING THE TREND
With 14 quarterbacks throwing for more than 300 yards, Frazier knows the NFL is becoming a pass-first league.
"When you consider that there were a record number of passers a year ago that threw for over 300 yards, it's becoming a trend, it really is. That's the new NFL," he said. "I'm surprised it was only 14 on Sunday. That's the way the league seems to be going, in that direction."
However, don't expect Frazier to issue a mandate to offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave that the Vikings should follow the trend. Not with Peterson on the roster and healthy.
"We've got the best running back in the National Football League and we're grateful for that and we like the way our offense is structured," Frazier said. "We've just got to keep working to get a rhythm and find that balance that we need, but I like our situation. I like the fact that we have number 28 in our backfield."
The Vikings remain relatively injury-free heading into the second week of the regular season. With the Tampa Bay Buccaneers game just four days away, the only Vikings on the injury report Wednesday were DE Adrian Awasom (knee), CB Asher Allen (toe) and WR Michael Jenkins (groin). Awasom didn't practice, but Allen and Jenkins were full participants.
QB Donovan McNabb, who was on the injury report last week because of a bruised right wrist, is no longer listed. McNabb, who threw for only 39 yards, said the wrist wasn't an issue for him in the season opener.
For the Bucs, WR Sammie Stroughter (foot) is out. TE Kellen Winslow (not injury related) and CB Myron Lewis (ankle) didn't participate Wednesday.
Tim Yotter is the publisher of Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Viking Update web site or magazine, click here.