Peterson's awards keep coming

Adrian Peterson was named the NFC Offensive Player of the Week and is up for an award voted on by the fans as well. The hits keep coming for No. 28.

Adrian Peterson will be looking to add even more accolades to his growing list of honors, as he is one of three finalists for this week's FedEx Ground Player of the Week and looks to make it two weeks in a row as the ground player winner – not to mention already being honored by the league for his outstanding game against Green Bay.

It will be hard to fight his performance – 30 carries for 192 yards and the game-winning touchdown – but there is some stiff competition. Thomas Jones of the Jets ran for 149 yards and three TDs in New York's blowout win over St. Louis and Maurice Jones-Drew of Jacksonville had 11 carries for 70 yards and three TDs against Detroit.

Fans can vote until 10 a.m. Friday at http://NFL.com/FedEx to cast their votes for Peterson.

While the fans will determine who will win the FedEx ground award, the NFL has already spoken, naming A.D. the NFC Offensive Player of the Week. It is the third time he has won the honor.

It seems clear that if the Vikings are going to make a playoff run, they will need Peterson to be the focal point of the offense. As the only runner in the league with more than 1,000 yards rushing, he's well on his way to becoming the dominating player everyone in Minnesota has expected he would be. If the wins can follow, the rest will fall into place.

WEDNESDAY NOTES

  • Peterson was Jim Rome's guest on the ESPN show "Jim Rome is Burning." A.D. repeated his belief that he can reach 2,000 rushing yards this season, but added that the team winning is more important than any individual milestone.

  • In other Peterson news, a couple of stories have circulated concerning Peterson's penchant for taking off his helmet while on the field, which is a violation of league rules. It was pointed out the Peterson had his helmet off on the field four times – when Charles Gordon broke his ankle, when the Vikings decided to go for a fourth-and-1 in the fourth quarter, after fumbling on that same fourth-and-1 and after scoring the go-ahead touchdown. The rules state that any player taking his helmet off on the field is subject to a penalty. Now that it has been pointed out, look for referees to keep a closer eye on A.D. and potentially hit him with a penalty if he does it again. Often times, players don't even realize they do it because it is something they have done since their high school days, which could be bad news for A.D. and the Vikings.

  • Is Brad Childress winning over Vikings fans? While his approval rating on an unscientific ESPN poll is still down in the Bush 43 category at just 36 percent, he has risen past such struggling coaches as Herm Edwards, Wade Phillips, Andy Reid, Mike Holmgren, Dick Jauron and Mike McCarthy. Packers fans have been especially harsh, giving McCarthy just a 23 percent approval rating.

  • Bucs coach Jon Gruden had something other to worry about than the Vikings. Reports in the local Tampa media said that Gruden might be interested in the vacant Tennessee coaching job. Gruden dismissed that speculation Tuesday, saying he's happy to be where he is.

  • The Vikings figured they were at a huge disadvantage with the Bears and Packers by not having E.J. Henderson for the rest of the season. It would appear Green Bay has seen the playing field leveled by losing its middle linebacker – Nick Barnett – for the season with a knee injury.

  • The Bucs added Carnell Williams to the roster Wednesday and, as a result, former Viking Michael Bennett was released.

  • CBS-TV football analyst Charley Casserley chirped in his two cents worth on Jared Allen, which is should be noted was run in a Milwaukee newspaper, saying Allen should be suspended for hits on Matt Schaub. Allen, who was fined $50,000 for those hits, had also been slapped with a $5,000 fine for unnecessary roughness in the previous game against Chicago. With the helmet-to-helmet penalty on Aaron Rodgers, he could be facing even stiffer NFL discipline.

  • The Vikings lead the NFL with 11 touchdowns of 20 yards or more, apparently living up to Brad Childress' claim of being a "kick-ass offense."

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