2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Panthers worried about RB Peterson, not Viking QBs

By STEVE REED - AP Sports Writer
    2013-10-10 17:07

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - The Panthers don't seem all that worried about who'll be playing quarterback for the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday.

Their focus this week is on stopping Pro Bowl running back Adrian Peterson.

Peterson, who ran for 2,097 yards last season, is second in the NFL in rushing this year with 421 yards for the Vikings (1-3).

It should be a huge test for middle linebacker Luke Kuechly and the Panthers (1-3), who are seventh in the league against the run and have held three of their four opponents 90 yards rushing or less.

Carolina coach Ron Rivera joked that preparing for Peterson is ``easy in one part because you know he's getting the ball - and hard on the other part because you know he's getting the ball.''

The Panthers know how hard Peterson is to stop.

``He's electric,'' Kuechly said. ``He's got everything you want in a running back. He's quick, strong, powerful, explosive and he can run. He's one of those guys where everybody knows about and everybody knows what he can do.''

The Vikings are expected to start Matt Cassel at quarterback after he led Minnesota to its first win over the season over the Pittsburgh Steelers before the bye.

However, there's a chance the recently signed Josh Freeman could see action, too.

``Switching up the quarterback might change up some things, but we have to be concerned with stopping the run,'' Panthers linebacker Chase Blackburn said. ``Stop the run first and the rest sort of falls in line. If you let the run eat you up it opens up the play-action and a whole can of worms you don't want.''

Blackburn said the Panthers coaching staff showed the defense a statistic earlier this week that stuck with him: Peterson has kept going after ``first contact'' in 72 of his 90 carries this season.

Blackburn said that means the Panthers need as many players as possible running to the ball.

``He runs aggressive. He runs mad,'' Blackburn said of Peterson. ``He likes the contact. He gets into it and embraces it and breaks a lot of tackles.''

Rivera said he's talked to his players this week about matching Peterson's intensity.

``You have to match it because if not he has that opportunity to break one at any time,'' Rivera said.

Panthers defensive end Greg Hardy said Peterson is one of the first people he chooses when picking his team on his Madden video game.

He said Peterson is a beast in the game.

And Hardy knows exactly what he's capable of in real life, too.

Peterson had 159 yards from scrimmage - 83 rushing and 76 receiving - and scored two touchdowns in Minnesota's 24-21 win over Carolina in 2011.

``I've got to hit him in the face and hope he doesn't break my ankles off,'' Hardy said.

Peterson talked this offseason about wanting to run for 2,500 yards this year. He's currently on pace for 1,684 yards rushing.

Peterson said once the season begins he doesn't pay much attention to his numbers.

``I see my Twitter account and it gives me some good feedback, and I'll be like `Hmm, I didn't know that,''' Peterson said. ``The other day they were saying that compared to last year, I'm like 30 yards ahead of where I was last year, and I finished with 2,000 yards then. So it's like, you don't know.''

Hardy said the Panthers are out to be an obstacle in Peterson's chase at NFL history.

``He's awesome,'' Hardy said. ``I play with him on Madden. I don't know what else you want me to say. I'm a defensive end. He's a running back. He's going to run. I'm going to try to break his neck.''

---

AP NFL website www.pro32.ap.org

---

Follow Steve Reed on Twitter: http://twitter.com/SteveReedAP

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Justin HoustonMar 2 09:52a

Kansas City Chiefs LB Justin Houston had the franchise tag placed on him Monday, March 2, according to a source.

Ndamukong SuhMar 2 09:43a

Detroit Lions impending free-agent DT Ndamukong Suh will not receive the franchise tag Monday, March 2.

LaMarr WoodleyMar 1 07:12p

The Oakland Raiders plan to release DE LaMarr Woodley, a league source said Sunday, March 1. He made just five tackles in six games before his season ended due [ More ]

DeMarco MurrayMar 1 02:42p

Dallas Cowboys impending free-agent RB DeMarco Murray probably will hit the free-agent market since contract talks with him have gone slow, according to executive vice president Stephen Jones. Jones [ More ]

Dez BryantFeb 28 10:12p

Dallas Cowboys WR Dez Bryant is expected to receive the franchise tag by Monday, March 2, but during the NFL Scouting Combine, team owner Jerry Jones said that he [ More ]

DeMarco MurrayFeb 28 09:02p

Dallas Cowboys RB DeMarco Murray could give the team a chance to match any offer he receives during free agency, according to executive vice president Stephen Jones. 'There is [ More ]

Dez BryantFeb 28 08:52p

Dallas Cowboys WR Dez Bryant will receive the franchise tag by the deadline Monday, March 2, executive vice president Stephen Jones confirmed Saturday, Feb. 28. The move will guarantee [ More ]

EJ ManuelFeb 28 02:22p

Buffalo Bills QB EJ Manuel still seems to be the No. 1 option at quarterback, for now, with Josh McCown heading to the Cleveland Browns. Buffalo could still add [ More ]

Josh McCownFeb 27 07:52p

Updating a previous report, Cleveland Browns QB Josh McCown signed a three-year deal Friday, Feb. 27, according to a source. Financial terms of the deal weren't disclosed. McCown completed [ More ]

Josh McCownFeb 27 06:32p

Free-agent QB Josh McCown (Buccaneers) has signed with the Cleveland Browns, according to his agent. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Reggie WayneFeb 27 04:42p

Indianapolis Colts impending free-agent WR Reggie Wayne (triceps) recently underwent surgery on his triceps and has started his rehab. Wayne still has not decided if he will play in 2015.

Darnell DockettFeb 27 04:22p

Arizona Cardinals DT Darnell Dockett was released Friday, Feb. 27. The Cardinals would like to re-sign Dockett if he is not able to find a better offer from another team.

Brandon GibsonFeb 27 03:42p

Miami Dolphins WR Brandon Gibson was released Friday, Feb. 27.

Stephen BowenFeb 27 03:22p

Washington Redskins DE Stephen Bowen was released Friday, Feb. 27.

Adrian PetersonFeb 27 02:42p

Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson could be a trade target for the Indianapolis Colts. QB Andrew Luck hasn't had a successful running game behind him so far in Indianapolis. [ More ]

Adrian PetersonFeb 27 02:42p

Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson could be a trade option for the Arizona Cardinals with QB Carson Palmer and WR Larry Fitzgerald nearing the end of their careers in [ More ]

Adrian PetersonFeb 27 02:32p

Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson could be an option to be traded to the Dallas Cowboys. Peterson is from Palestine, Texas, which is between Dallas and Houston, and he's [ More ]

Devonta FreemanFeb 27 02:12p

Atlanta Falcons RB Devonta Freeman could be the full-time back in new offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan's scheme next season, according tot general manager Thomas Dimitroff. 'My first impression of [ More ]

Robert GeathersFeb 27 01:32p

Cincinnati Bengals DE Robert Geathers was released Friday, Feb. 27.

Greg LittleFeb 27 01:32p

Cincinnati Bengals WR Greg Little was released Friday, Feb. 27.

Chris CantyFeb 27 11:32a

Baltimore Ravens DE Chris Canty was released Friday, Feb. 27. The move saved the team around $2.7 million on the salary cap.

Brian HartlineFeb 27 10:32a

Miami Dolphins WR Brian Hartline was released Friday, Feb. 27.

Harry DouglasFeb 27 10:32a

Atlanta Falcons WR Harry Douglas was released Friday, Feb. 27.

Matt HasselbeckFeb 26 07:42p

Indianapolis Colts impending free-agent QB Matt Hasselbeck was re-signed to a one-year deal Thursday, Feb. 26. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Steven JacksonFeb 26 07:32p

Atlanta Falcons RB Steven Jackson will reportedly be released Friday, Feb. 27.

Adrian PetersonFeb 26 05:52p

Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson's suspension was overturned by U.S. District Judge David S. Doty Thursday, Feb. 26. However, the NFL also announced that they will appeal the ruling, [ More ]

Travis KelceFeb 26 05:42p

Kansas City Chiefs TE Travis Kelce, who led the team with 67 catches and 862 receiving yards in 2014, is expected to be a more prominent part of the [ More ]

Kendall LangfordFeb 26 04:12p

St. Louis Rams DT Kendall Langford was released Thursday, Feb. 26, saving the team $6 million in salary cap space.

Greg HardyFeb 26 02:32p

Carolina Panthers impending free-agent DE Greg Hardy will seek immediate reinstatement after a judge overturned Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson's suspension, according to a source.

Theo RiddickFeb 26 02:22p

Detroit Lions RB Theo Riddick likely will be given the chance to earn a bigger role in the offense next season after the team released RB Reggie Bush.

Adrian PetersonFeb 26 12:32p

Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson's suspension has been overturned after a judge granted a motion from the NFL Players Association to vacate the suspension.

Michael RoosFeb 26 12:02p

Free-agent OT Michael Roos (Titans) has announced his retirement from professional football.

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2015 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group