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.