Friday, September 25, 2015, 7:02pm
Broncos RB C.J. Anderson (ankle, toe, probable) took full practice reps all week and is probable for Week 3. We’re expecting Anderson to have a bounce back game against the Lions, who just gave up 134 yards to Adrian Peterson.
Thursday, September 24, 2015, 6:16pm
Broncos RB C.J. Anderson (ankle, toe) took full practice reps again Thursday. Anderson finished the Thursday night game against the Chiefs and had a few extra days to heal. He should be fine to face the Lions. Anderson said that he’s “fine now.” We’re expecting Anderson to have a bounce back game against the Lions, who just gave up 134 yards to Adrian Peterson.
Monday, September 21, 2015, 9:24am
After the 49ers loss, running back Adrian Peterson talked about how “hesitant” he was running the ball out of the shotgun formation. That seems understandable. Starting from a stand-still position seems harder than getting the ball from a running start, especially behind a leaky line.
Peterson had only 10 carries for 31 yards. So obviously all eyes would be not only on how many carries he would get on Sunday against the Lions, but how he would receive the ball on those carries.
Here is Peterson's breakdown from Week 2:
From I-formation with no fullback: 13 carries for 101 yards (7.8), one fumble.
From I-formation with the fullback: Six carries for 8 yards (1.3).
From the shotgun: Nine carries for 27 yards (3.0), one fumble.
From the pistol: One carry for minus-2 yards.
The author isn't surprised OC Norv Turner found a nice blend of ways to integrate Peterson into the offense with carries from the shotgun, I-formation and even one pistol formation. It looks like Peterson's bread-and-butter is in the I with no fullback.
Of Adrian Peterson's 10 carries on Monday night, six came with Teddy Bridgewater under center. Four were with Bridgewater in the shotgun, about 4-5 yards behind the center with Peterson standing next to him. Peterson gained just 7 yards on those four handoffs, as opposed to 24 yards on six carries in an I-formation. And while it was only four handoffs, it was also 40 percent of the workload for Peterson on his first night back, after he'd taken just 60 carries in the shotgun in the last two years.
"You really just need to be more patient, allow the pulling guard to get on his block and hit it up in there," he said Monday night. "Those are the ones I felt like I was kind of hesitant on. I really wanted to hit like I was coming out of the I-formation."
Said coach Mike Zimmer on Tuesday: "I don't think he looked tentative. I think he was aggressive, trying to get to the hole and maybe trying to get to it a little bit too fast at times."
A big part of Peterson's game has been starting 7 yards deep in the backfield, taking a handoff and hitting the line at full speed. He's going to be asked to change that approach with Bridgewater, who was under center only about 34 percent of the time last year, and there's inevitably going to be an adjustment period for Peterson. But even in the limited success the Vikings had with Peterson in the shotgun Monday night, there were hints of why they want to play that way.
After letting league-leading rusher DeMarco Murray go in free agency, and not making a move for any replacement, or trading for a guy like Adrian Peterson, the Cowboys seem determined to go with their running back by committee.
In Saturday’s game against the Vikings, Joseph Randle started and had six carries for 15 yards. Darren McFadden took the second quarter and added four carries for 37 yards. While it may not be Murray, getting 10 for 52 out of the pair of them is a solid start.
“I thought they both did a good job,” quarterback Tony Romo said, via Todd Archer of ESPNDallas.com. “I thought the looks were a little tougher for Joe early on with the way they played it, then we got to some runs we could attack them with and it opened up some holes. Darren obviously did good on those and made some explosive runs.
“But sometimes the dirty ones are some of the best ones too.”
So as much as it made sense that they might pursue more of a bell-cow back, Jones seemed content going with the duo into the regular season.
“I see how we can line up certainly this coming week but I see how we can line up against the Giants, yes, I do,” Jones said. “You say, ‘Well, couldn’t you see it before?’ Now, I saw the same things before. I expect [Randle] to give us and has the talent to make some of the plays we saw him make tonight. I certainly know [McFadden] can make them and [Lance] Dunbar can do the same. If they’re healthy, I’ll take their skill and what they can bring and go to the game against the Giants and won’t ask for any more.”
Going with that approach is going to put more pressure on Romo and their offensive line this year, but they seem comfortable with that for the time being, the story pointed out. Maybe more importantly, it's going to be a headache for fantasy owners. Add Lance Dunbar in the mix, especially in the passing game, and there's potential for a three-headed backfield. Randle is still our pick to have the most fantasy value out of the three.
The Vikings were in the shotgun or pistol about 65 percent of the time after Teddy Bridgewater took over as the starting QB in Week 4 last season -- the 13th-most in the league, according to ESPN Stats & Information -- and their 565 shotgun snaps in that time were only 210 less than they had in 2012 and 2013 combined.
Adrian Peterson, of course, was in the backfield both of those seasons, and has yet to play his first game with Bridgewater at quarterback. In those two seasons, Peterson ran just 40 times out of the shotgun, or one fewer than Christian Ponder. Matt Asiata and Jerick McKinnon, on the other hand, logged a combined 114 carries out of the shotgun last season.
"I think the things we're doing out of the shotgun, he's very comfortable with, and getting more comfortable," Turner said. "We're going to give him a good dose of the things he does best and has done best his entire career. We're going to try to spread the field a little bit and do some things to give him more space."
There's little doubt the offense will require something of an adjustment for Peterson, who's made a career out of lining up seven yards deep in the backfield and hitting the line of scrimmage with a healthy fury, the story said. But between the Vikings having enough of Peterson's staples in the playbook and giving the running back enough practice snaps to adjust, offensive coordinator Norv Turner thinks Peterson will be fine with an offense that's a little more spread out. It should only help Peterson as long as Bridgewater and the receivers and prove to be a legit passing threat. It will be a lot for defenses to account for.
The hype machine has yet to start cranking for Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Charles Johnson. When it comes to the team's offensive skill positions, running back Adrian Peterson, quarterback Teddy Bridgewater and a handful of other receivers have all generated more discussion than Johnson.
However, Johnson's 10-yard touchdown catch in a preseason win over the Oakland Raiders on Saturday served as a subtle reminder of what he brings to Minnesota's offense.
"You talk about that touchdown catch he had today with the defensive back all over his shoulders," Bridgewater said, per ESPN's Ben Goessling. "Charles, he’s a big, physical guy. He helps out in the run game with his blocking for the running backs and it showed tonight in the passing game in just the first half -- not even the entire first half, but the first quarter. He showed that he’s going to be big for us this year."
At 6-foot-2 and 215 pounds, Johnson hides in a cast of receivers that includes Mike Wallace, Cordarrelle Patterson and rookie sensation Stefon Diggs, among others. He is listed as the starting "WR2," opposite Wallace, on the Vikings' preseason depth chart, the story said. Johnson is 34th on our WR list and hasn't really been that big of a secret in drafts this season. Teams are taking him in the middle rounds because he's got a lot of positive press since the end of last season.
Tuesday, August 25, 2015, 8:23am
The Minnesota Vikings' running game has put up meager numbers so far in the preseason, and there's one particular area of it that coach Mike Zimmer feels the team needs to fix. Zimmer didn't divulge what the fix was, but it's probably a safe bet he doesn't have "get future Hall of Famer for backfield" on his daily to-do list.
Adrian Peterson certainly figures to provide a jolt to the Vikings' running game when he steps back on the field on Sept. 14, and his presence could minimize some of the issues the Vikings are having on the ground game. In the meantime, however, the fact Peterson isn't playing in the preseason probably gives the Vikings time to clean things up before Peterson covers them up.
The Vikings are averaging just 3.1 yards per carry in the preseason, and gained only 87 yards on 32 carries Saturday night against the Oakland Raiders. Zimmer had several points of emphasis for players when they returned to work on Monday; improving the run game was among the top priorities. While Peterson should be a quick-fix, it's also important the backups show some signs of life if something were to happen to AP.
Tuesday, August 18, 2015, 8:04pm
Peterson, recovering from a right thigh bruise, sat out practice with the exception of doing some late light work without a helmet. He was hurt Aug. 11 in practice and missed workouts for two days before returning to limited duty on Monday.
Peterson won't play in the exhibition season. He's expected to next take the field Sept. 14 in the regular-season opener at San Francisco.
Vikings running back Adrian Peterson, who missed two days of practice last week because of a left thigh bruise, returned to practice today. He participated in some of the individual drills, but stayed on the sideline for the 11-on-11 portion of the fully-padded practice.
Peterson didn’t play in Saturday’s 26-16 preseason win over the Buccaneers. But he wouldn’t have played even if he was healthy. He won’t play until the regular season starts on Sept. 14 at San Francisco so there's no need to rush him back to practice.
While the Rams practiced on one field, a pad-less rookie ran routes against air and caught passes. He looked completely normal, which is the curse of Todd Gurley, their first-round pick. He's so athletic that even when he's rated at 90 percent on a surgically repaired knee, he looks 100 percent. But make no mistake, Gurley isn't ready yet. He won't play in the preseason. I'm told the Rams don't even expect him to be ready for the season. They believe he'll miss the first couple games, not wanting to risk injury until he's ready. The ligament is strong, but the area around it isn't there yet. With so much invested in a player compared to a young Adrian Peterson, St. Louis will be cautious. But the future is so bright for Gurley, team personnel can barely contain themselves.
Gurley is widely considered to be the best running back in the 2015 draft class, but he’s recovering from a November ACL tear. He’ll be nine months into his recovery in August, but he avoided the PUP list at the start of training camp, which is a good sign for his early season availability, though he may not play in Week 1. Typically, an athlete can return to their sport six months after surgery, but that doesn’t mean they’ll be game-ready. Prospective owners should draft Tre Mason or DeAngelo Williams as insurance. When Gurley returns, he should provide high end RB2 numbers if he begins to get starter’s touches.
Vikings OC Norv Turner confirmed that running back Adrian Peterson, who injured his right thigh on a play on Tuesday, isn’t injured seriously, but isn’t expected to practice this afternoon. “Coach [Mike] Zimmer obviously gives the injury reports, but I talked to [head athletic trainer] Eric Sugarman. We all held our breath for a second [when Peterson went down], but Adrian is fine.”
It sounds like the thigh injury is nothing to worry about. Throwing out his one-game season in 2014, Peterson never finished outside of the top 6 on a per game basis in standard formats (or outside the top 11 in PPR) in his previous seven seasons. He's now on the wrong side of 30, but his legs should be fresh after taking a full season off to deal with his criminal case. Turner has a history of feeding the ball to his top running back; LaDainian Tomlinson averaged 20.9 touches per game from 2007-09 while he and Turner were in San Diego. That included 2.86 receptions per game, which would represent a career high 45-46 receptions for Peterson if he catches the ball at the same rate.
Vikings RB Adrian Peterson left practice after dropping to the ground during a run drill on Tuesday afternoon, but it didn't sound as though the Minnesota Vikings running back's injury was anything serious.
A source said Peterson told those around him he'd taken a helmet to the thigh, but that there was nothing wrong with his knee. And running back Jerick McKinnon said he thought Peterson would be back at practice on Wednesday.
"He got tangled up," McKinnon said. "A defender fell on him, but he said he was alright. Everybody knows Adrian's got a cape on. He'll be back out here tomorrow. I don't think anybody's worried about him."
Peterson stayed on the ground briefly before getting up, and eventually went back in for one more snap. He appeared to be walking with a slight limp as he watched team drills, but stood on the side of practice for about 10 minutes before heading in with athletic trainer Eric Sugarman. Looks like Peterson dodged a bullet and owners can breath a sigh of relief. We'll continue to keep you updated.
Adrian Peterson was forced to leave the field early during training camp practice on Tuesday because of what appeared to be an injury to his leg.
The Vikings Pro Bowl running back went to the ground -- something that isn't supposed to happen -- during an inside run drill and was slow to get up. He limped to the sideline and attempted to test out his leg by jogging in place.
Peterson, 30, then got back into drills for one play before again walking to the sideline with athletic trainer Eric Sugarman. When team drills were complete, Peterson went to the locker room while the team continued to practice.
No immediate details were available about the exact nature of Peterson's injury. Peterson, who was limited to only one regular-season appearance in 2014, did not play in the Vikings' win over Pittsburgh on Sunday in the Hall of Fame game and is not expected to appear in any preseason games.
Tough Todd Gurley appears to be ahead of schedule in his rehab from a torn ACL last November, head coach Jeff Fisher confirmed the rookie running back likely won't see playing time in the preseason.
"We are going to take our time," Fisher told NFL Media's Andrew Siciliano.
"I don't have to see him in a preseason game to play him in a regular season game," Fisher said. "It's unlikely that you'll see him in a preseason game, because he's got some work to do."
However, at the same time, the club is impressed with how Gurley looks thus far in training camp.
Whether Gurley suits up in Week 1 is an unknown, but the early reports out of training camp indicates their first-round draft pick could be ready sooner rather than later.
Tre Mason could even start the season if the Rams don't want to rush Gurley, but the thought by many is Gurley eventually takes over the lead back role with Mason more of a third down option. When that transition takes place or how long it takes is the big question, so drafting Mason is a bit of a risk - at least outside of PPR leagues. The real upside is with Gurley, but owners may have to stash him on their bench until his role is secure.
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