Around the NFL  

FOR SENSITIVE NEWS - HOUSE ADS ONLY  

Where does the Vikings' offense go from here?

Print

Asked how the Vikings will move forward in a post-Adrian Peterson world, Minnesota play-caller Norv Turner talked Thursday about relying on the base of talent that remains.

Let's take a look at who might play a larger role for the Vikings starting Sunday:

1. It all starts with wideout Cordarrelle Patterson. The absence of Peterson should trigger an increase of carries for the team's freakiest athlete. Patterson blew up the St. Louis Rams in Week 1 with 102 yards off three carries, showing more tackle-breaking ability than Matt Asiata has displayed in a lifetime. Patterson didn't have a carry in last week's ugly loss to the Patriots, but Norv is bound to use the wideout on an assortment of jet sweeps and reverses starting Sunday against the Saints.

2. We're also bound to see more from rookie Jerick McKinnon, the athletic change-of-pace runner who saw his three snaps from Week 1 increase to 23 against New England. "There's not too many guys who impress me like that," Peterson said of McKinnon's physical gifts in July. After McKinnon's impressive preseason, it's time to see what the former Georgia Southern star can do with a larger piece of the pie.

3. Norv Turner is no stranger to losing his lead runner. He was Cleveland's play-caller last season when Trent Richardson was traded after Week 2, leaving the offense with nothing on the ground. Turner cobbled together his ragtag collection of quarterbacks to throw for more than 4,000 yards and lead the NFL in pass attempts. You can't gawk at Josh Gordon's league-leading 1,646 yards last season without acknowledging Turner's vertical passing scheme.

4. A focus on the air attack should all but guarantee a career year for Kyle Rudolph, the pass-catching tight end who spent his offseason studying film of Jordan Cameron's 2013 breakout season under Turner. There's no replacing Adrian Peterson, but Rudolph is among a cast of intriguing elements on offense who will be asked to step up.

The latest "Around The NFL Podcast" recaps every Sunday game from an upset-heavy Week 2 in the NFL, and considers what RGIII's injury could mean for the Redskins.

Print