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Peterson: Vikings have 'desire to win no matter what'

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The Minnesota Vikings have the chance to make a powerful statement in the NFC North on Sunday.

A win at home over the slumping Packers would carve out a two-game divisional lead for a club that hasn't topped Green Bay in three seasons.

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"I feel like there's a shift," running back Adrian Peterson said Thursday, per the St. Paul Pioneer Press. "Being able to take advantage of those opportunities, they're slim. You don't get to have too many opportunities in this league, especially when you're playing a game like Sunday against Green Bay.

"I'm definitely feeling a shift in terms of the mentality of the team, the way we continue to approach it with the fight, the will and the desire to win no matter what."

Peterson's play is a major part of the surge, with the veteran back on pace for 1,708 rushing yards and nine scores on the ground. What we saw in last week's win over the Raiders was a 30-year-old runner growing stronger as the game progressed.

While the offense has been up and down, Minnesota's defense has caught fire under coach Mike Zimmer, emerging as the NFL's second stingiest team in terms of points allowed. It's impossible to watch a Vikings game and not come away impressed by space-eating nose tackle Linval Joseph, who leads a unit that's kept every opponent under 24 points in 2015.

If Aaron Rodgers and his ailing Packers offense plan to get well on Sunday, they'll need to do so against one of the NFL's most underrated defensive whirlwinds. Sunday can't come soon enough.

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