From the time Adrian Peterson came off the field following Sunday's win over the Bears in which he did just about everything he could to personally assure victory, he has become the darling of the sports media like few others in recent memory.
When Tony Romo, who will be lined up on the other side of the field today, took over as the starting QB, his five-touchdown performance on Thanksgiving Day came down in front of a national audience. He was lauded as the next big thing. But even that pales by comparison to A.P.'s recent ascent in the consciousness of the NFL.
The league's official website has had photos of Peterson on their home page all week with headlines like "Can Dallas Stop Him?" The same is true at Fox Sports, CBS Sportsline, The Sporting News, Pro Football Weekly, CNN/SI and a ton of others. Perhaps no player has had more written about him during the span of one week as Peterson has since emerging as the top rusher in the league and a dominant playmaker.
Vikings fans can take heart in knowing that we get to see A.P. every week and we knew he had stardom in him from Day One of minicamp. But, now that the word is out of the bag, we'll have to get used to sharing him with the rest of the NFL world. Over the next couple of weeks, expect to see dozens of TV reports, magazine stories and interviews with Peterson splashing throughout the NFL world.
You've arrived, A.P. Let the media blitz begin.
* There may be more pressure on Tarvaris Jackson to have a much more productive game in the passing department than he did against the Bears, where he completed just nine passes. The Cowboys have injuries in their secondary and were scorched for 373 yards passing by the Patriots last week.
* Dallas leads the all-time series against the Vikings with a 13-12 record. But the Vikings are 7-4 all-time at Dallas, have won five of the last six meetings at Texas Stadium and have won all five meetings with the Cowboys since 1998.
* One battle to watch today is Cowboys OLB DeMarcus Ware and Vikings OT Bryant McKinnie. Ware leads the Cowboys with 5.5 sacks and will likely be bringing the heat from Jackson's blind side all day.
* The high temperature expected for today is 88 degrees.
* The Vikings are 9½ point underdogs, which was enough to have four of the six experts at CBS Sportsline on the Vikings bandwagon for this week. While they wouldn't predict a Vikings win, they were willing to take the points as an incentive.
* Despite having a big day against the Cowboys, the Patriots run game was limited to just 2.6 yards a carry last week.
* Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher was fined $7,500 for a horse-collar tackle on Chester Taylor in last Sunday's loss to the Vikings. Urlacher wasn't penalized on the play, but league officials deemed the play to be in violation when reviewing game film.