Peterson to work on ball security

Adrian Peterson's two fumbles Sunday were not characteristic of him, but the running back needs to make sure he doesn't gain that reputation.

Adrian Peterson likely will be spending time this week working on securing the football.

The second-year running back has lost three fumbles in the past three games, including two costly turnovers in the Vikings' come-from-behind 12-10 victory over the Detroit Lions at the Metrodome. "That's really not part of my game, putting the ball on the turf," he said. "You can't have that."

Peterson is among the most dangerous backs in the NFL, and he ranks among the league leaders with 563 yards rushing on 129 carries. But nobody wants to gain the reputation of being unable to consistently hold onto the ball.

"I know (running backs coach) Eric Bieniemy works with all of those guys all the time just on keeping it high-and-tight and ball security and those types of things," coach Brad Childress said. "The thing about that is when you put that on film, whether you are in fact a fumbler or you are not a fumbler, defensive coaches look at that and you become a target. So when you say your tape is your resume, with that having happened the last couple of weeks, he becomes an added target where it is, ‘Hey, we can take the ball from that guy.' We do. We certainly look at that all the time."

There is no doubt the Chicago Bears will take their shots at knocking the ball loose from Peterson when they play the Vikings on Sunday at Soldier Field. Last season, Peterson set a then-Vikings single-game record by rushing for 224 yards against the Bears in Chicago.

Three games later, Peterson established the NFL single-game mark with 296 yards rushing against San Diego. He has three 100-yard rushing performances this season, although his 111 yards Sunday against Detroit marked the first time he reached that mark in three games.

"When I'm out there I definitely want to make a play," Peterson said. "But coach keeps reminding me that every play is not going to be a touchdown or big gain. Sometimes it might be the two-, three-yard runs that decide the game. I just go out there and continue to hit it. Eventually it will come."

NOTES

  • QB Gus Frerotte has compiled a 3-1 record since taking over as the Vikings' starting quarterback in Week 3. Frerotte threw for 296 yards (18-for-33) with one touchdown and one interception in Minnesota's 12-10 victory over Detroit on Sunday. He also was sacked five times. Frerotte might not be an upper-echelon quarterback, but he brings a stability and toughness that was lacking when Tarvaris Jackson held the starting job.

  • RB Adrian Peterson had his first 100-yard rushing effort in three games when he went for 111 yards on 25 carries against the Lions. However, he also lost two fumbles and now has three in the past three games. That's as many fumbles as he lost all of last season.

  • RB Chester Taylor carried only five times for 21 yards against Detroit. The interesting thing was his longest carry went for 13 yards, which also was the longest run by Adrian Peterson. The difference is Peterson took 20 more handoffs than Taylor. Taylor also caught three passes for 33 yards. The veteran continues to see his most action in third-down passing situations when his blocking ability can be used.

  • TE Visanthe Shiancoe caught only one pass for 10 yards on Sunday, but the good news is he hasn't made any of the glaring mistakes (i.e. drops) that created so much unrest early in the season. Shiancoe now has 13 receptions, and his two touchdown catches tie him with WR Bernard Berrian for the team lead.

  • WR Bernard Berrian has had back-to-back 100-yard receiving games, making him the first Vikings player to accomplish the feat since Nate Burleson did it during the 2004 season. Berrian had five catches for 131 yards and an 86-yard touchdown Sunday against the Lions. He accomplished this despite playing with a sore toe and aching knee that limited him in practice during the week. Berrian leads the Vikings with 436 yards receiving on 22 catches.

  • WR Sidney Rice sat out for the third time in the past four games because of a sprained posterior cruciate ligament in his right knee suffered in Week 2 against Indianapolis. The second-year player was expected to be a key part of the Vikings' receiving attack this season but has only three catches for 37 yards and a touchdown in three games.

  • WR Bobby Wade has been forced to play outside more often than the Vikings would like because of the injury to Sidney Rice. Wade is more effective lining up in the slot. But he still had four catches for 71 yards against the Lions and leads the Vikings with 25 receptions.

  • DT Kevin Williams had one of the best games of his Pro Bowl career on Sunday against the Lions. The six-year pro had a career-high four sacks and also added four quarterback hurries and had a team-leading eight tackles.

  • S Madieu Williams has returned to the practice field on a limited basis after being out since early in training camp because of a neck injury. Williams, signed to a six-year, $33 million free agent deal during the offseason that included almost $13 million guaranteed, isn't expected to be ready to play in a game until after the Vikings' bye on Oct. 26.


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