Peterson’s Pass Protection Continues To Improve

Posted by cjsiewert on October 29, 2010 – 6:59 am

Ever since stepping onto the field as a rookie in 2007, Vikings RB Adrian Peterson has shown players, coaches and fans alike how much of an explosive RB he is with blazing speed and brute strength – an uncommon combination of qualities that has separated the All-Pro RB from the rest in the league.

Throughout his first 3 seasons, Peterson was lauded for his superior qualities running the football, but criticized for not being able to block well and pick up different blitz packages during passing situations.

The 4-year veteran has silenced those critics with his improved play during such scenarios so far in the 2010 campaign.

“Outstanding,” Vikings offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell mentioned on Thursday of Peterson’s blitz recognition in last Sunday’s loss to the Packers. “He did a great job of stepping up in there. It’s never been about his willingness to pick it up. There’s just some intricate details on how we’re going to pick them up, where you’re supposed to be looking. Are you looking inside-out, are you looking outside-in?”

With his continued dominance running the football, Peterson’s improvement in the blocking game adds another weapon to an already impressive arsenal of position-specific strengths – and #28 is gaining confidence in that regard.

“I am at that point,” Peterson acknowledged of his comfort level when blocking. “I feel like I have been at that point. It’s all about just having opportunities to go out there and get it done.

“That particular play that you are talking about (Visanthe Shiancoe’s nullified TD against the Packers), we watched in practice and we knew it was going to come. I saw it unfold and was able to make a good pickup. Unfortunately, the touchdown that wasn’t a touchdown but really was a touchdown didn’t count.”

The improvement in blitz recognition will be a must when the Vikings square off against the New England Patriots in Foxboro, Mass. on Sunday. The Patriots defense is known for its fluid formations and unscouted looks. They are labeled as a 3-4 defense, but the Vikings coaching staff is well aware of Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick’s knack for changing his defense to a 4-man front when necessary.

“He schemes the teams that he’s playing against and the offense that he’s playing against, whether it’s protections, whether it’s specific plays that he might try to take away,” Bevell said of Belichick. “We’re prepared for the unscouted looks basically. We talked to our guys about this being a rule week. Whether it’s in protection, whether it’s in assignments, you go by the rules. The rules can always take care of any look that’s an unscouted look.”

If the Vikings are going to get back on the winning track, Peterson’s ability – along with the rest of the Vikings RBs blocking on passing downs – to pick up the blitz will be vital.  When examining the matchup between Peterson and the Patriots defense, it could be said that the more complete the Vikings star RB is in the running and blocking games, the more likely a Purple victory will come as a result.

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22 Responses to “Peterson’s Pass Protection Continues To Improve”

  1. By Carl K on Oct 29, 2010 | Reply

    No question, Peterson has the talent to develop into a great 3rd down back. I have no problem with giving him more oportunities to develop his blocking skills and his ability to pickup blitz coverage. I would much rather see us develop AP into a complete back than to try (at this point) to develop a rookie for this 3rd down RB position. Peterson is a workhorse that usually gets better as the game go on. Keep him in the games as much as possible.

  2. By fire childress on Oct 29, 2010 | Reply

    it is apparent the only reason we won last year was pure talent, and Brett calling most of his own plays. we need to get rid of Chilly now, imagine how bad our team will be once we start losing our better players !

  3. By Lisa C on Oct 29, 2010 | Reply

    Childress is a little man trying to prove he can control Favre. Jackson is inaccurate and not one team showed any interest in him this year. That is why Sage got traded; a team actually wanted him. If Favre is able to play, he should start.
    I am from New England and they are licking their chops thinking about Jackson starting; it is exactly what Belichek wants. It is amazing how many people up here are laughing, and saying Childress is an idiot playing into Coach Bill’s plan.
    Favre at 70% scares New England more than Jackson.

  4. By patriots on Oct 29, 2010 | Reply

    You should be happy Farve still wants to play when he is hurt. He is like wounded old lion. even though he may not be threat as young healthy lion but still a lion.

  5. By Carl K on Oct 29, 2010 | Reply

    He can win with Favre or Tjack. Personally, I am most excited to see what Webb can do. We have a great front office staff, great players and coaches… if any team can turn it around the Vikings can. I hope New England is taking us lightly. We are still a very dangers 2-4 team for Belichick to deal with reguardless of who is playing QB.

  6. By purplehaze on Oct 29, 2010 | Reply



  7. By Cor-XLVikings ! on Oct 29, 2010 | Reply

    A.P. has worked on his fumbling-great job, and is a violent runner ! Better each year ! Pound the pats defense ALL DAY !

  8. By fire childress on Oct 29, 2010 | Reply

    coaches on the chopping clock this year
    Brad Childress
    Norv Turner
    Wade Phillips

  9. By Vikings4Life on Oct 29, 2010 | Reply

    A.P. is getting better but he shouldn’t have to be great . . . If Farve plays they should try timed routes and not sit in pocket for 10 seconds. No offense of line can block that long. I played High School and College as a quarterback. I know you don’t have more then 3 seconds to through so why should the pros. – sorry can spell the best.

    By the way most teams against us don’t stand in pocket long cause they know our D-ends will get them. So they through Quickly…

  10. By Rogerthevikefan on Oct 29, 2010 | Reply

    Petey is the best and when they decide to play him more on third down he will get even better. Mabey try a throwing it to him or a delayed handoff or put Harvin in the back then hand of to one of them or pass. Just use your weapon with greater effectiveness.

  11. By viking joe on Oct 29, 2010 | Reply

    i hear ya Lisa C. T-Jacks no Micheal Vick !!

  12. By fire childress on Oct 29, 2010 | Reply

    chilly presser<<<<<<<<>>>>>> well……ummmmmm…i hope this team can still win this game even though i’m completely incompetent as a head coach…maybe if i let Brett call all the plays we might have a chance to win….what can i say, i’m goodlooking and the best coach in the n.fl….what more is there?…i’m going to wear a wig at the game for good luck…

  13. By fire childress on Oct 29, 2010 | Reply

    chilly presser<<<<<<<>>>>>>>> well…..ummm….yeah Brett was out today throwing some…….i’ll have to ask him if he is going to start or not………… i done now?..

  14. By IronmanTen on Oct 29, 2010 | Reply

    AP is doing good but he rushes too quickly and ends up in the pile and doesn’t get that far. He should run his routes more smart and mix it up instead of always going through the middl, all that said he is still great!!

  15. By Rocky Smith on Oct 29, 2010 | Reply

    Albert Young has been a complete disappointment to me. He was given much more opportunities than the rest of the running backs during the preseason and he didn’t look good then. We cut three or four funning backs without even getting a good look at them. AP is doing well, but he needs someone who can come in and give him a breather. We cut Darius, Johnson, and Moats. Moats looked better than Young for the last five years in his NFL career and he only got two carries during the preseason and had 15 yards and made one block that lead to a touchdown by the QB. I think someone likes Young too much here, he is wasting space. AP needs some real help, until Gerhert is developed.

  16. By Nick Toth on Oct 29, 2010 | Reply

    thts my dad dressed as brett favre for a halloween party

  17. By TWVIKE on Oct 29, 2010 | Reply

    IronIdiot- You sound like Childress, trying to make a player change the way he performs. AP is doing just fine,2nd in the league in rushing, a game behind the leader.

  18. By 4eversteve on Oct 30, 2010 | Reply

    Not sure why A.P. has been coming out of he game on third down lately, if he has improved so much in the pass protection part of his game wouldn’t it be more effective to keep him in the game to keep the threat of the run alive and in play on any down. I like Toby Gerhart as a third down back as well and still think he will have a major impact on our season before it is all said and done, but he is still a rookie and Peterson is our home run threat every time he touches the ball and as long as he is on the field opposing defenses have to be extra cautious and aware of where he is at all times. The skilled players that the Vikings process should create mismatches all day long for opposing teams, it’s a matter of the play calling and timing of the plays depending down and distance, score of the game and time left on the clock are all keys and it is up to the coaches to dial them up at the appropriate time in order to obtain the goal of victory weekend and week out all season long!

  19. By chaos on Oct 30, 2010 | Reply

    At first i was against the idea of playing jackson at qb. last time he started he had something like 12 int. in 300 attempts. but remember what happened to the last person to back up favre. Rodgers backed up favre for 2 years before he started and he made the pro bowl last year. i personally would feel more comfortable with favre againts a proven team. but later in the season against a rebuilding team like the lions i would like to see jackson given a shot.

  20. By jerry doble on Oct 30, 2010 | Reply

    brett favre needs to res first have and jackson come in so brett can rest and watch the the firs half and peterson needs look for a open cap and excute

  21. By DontWorryBoutIt on Oct 30, 2010 | Reply

    Adrian Peterson..great player just on WRONG team..Vikings suck donkey azz

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