Found January 03, 2013 on Fox Sports Wisconsin:
GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Adrian Peterson was the best player for the Minnesota Vikings all season. There is no debating that. But as great as the team's star running back was, he needed some help from quarterback Christian Ponder in order to get the Vikings into the playoffs. Throughout most of the season, Peterson didn't get that help. In his second NFL season, Ponder mostly struggled and, at many points, looked like the type of quarterback who wouldn't last long as a starter. But following a horrendous performance from Ponder in Green Bay on Dec. 2 that dropped Minnesota to a 6-6 record, he slowly started to get the hang of things. That rapid improvement was capped off with a victory over the Packers in Week 17 in which Ponder had a season-high three touchdown passes and did not throw an interception. "He played a lot better," Packers defensive coordinator Dom Capers said. "He played a very efficient game. He did a nice job. We know he's a very mobile guy. He can make plays on the move and pulled the ball down and ran with it a couple times. You just have to be aware of that when you're playing against the Vikings." When Peterson only had 86 rushing yards in a Week 16 road win over the playoff-bound Houston Texans, that was the best evidence all season that Ponder is capable of carrying the offense. In that game, Ponder again did not have an interception and showed his running ability with seven rushes for 48 yards. "I'm not surprised by the way Christian Ponder played," Packers coach Mike McCarthy said. "He played an excellent game against us. We've had two contests against us this year, and he clearly played better in the second one. He played very well." It would be very generous to list Ponder as being in the top-half of NFL quarterbacks. He finished the regular season ranked 21st in passer rating, 23rd in touchdown passes and 25th in passing yards. But when working with a running back like Peterson, whose MVP-caliber season has entered him into the discussion of being an all-time great at his position, Ponder just has to be serviceable and not make costly mistakes. Ponder failed to do that when the Vikings were last at Lambeau Field one month ago. Minnesota was very competitive in that game, and arguably the better team in most areas, but Ponder's two interceptions were too much for the Vikings to overcome. "If anything, we want (Ponder) in the mix," linebacker Clay Matthews said. "We want to take 28' (Peterson) out of the mix, and that's the gameplan. I think they handed him the ball a career high last week. (We'll be better off) if we can eliminate those carries and force Ponder to beat us." There was no Packers player all week who believed that the key to stopping Minnesota's offense was by stopping Ponder. Of course not. The logical answer is that the focus is on Peterson and that an unproven quarterback making his first postseason start needs to prove himself in a big game like what Saturday night's will be. But Green Bay showed in Week 13 that the Vikings can be defeated even when Peterson runs for 210 yards on 21 carries like he did. The difference in the Packers winning the first meeting and Minnesota winning the second game was an efficient performance from Ponder. "They made a few tweaks, adjustments to their offense the second time around, caught us by surprise in the run game and in the pass game," cornerback Tramon Williams said. "They did a better job of game-planning and executing. Now, we feel that we've seen everything, so we should come out and execute also." Even Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers noticed a different Ponder in the game last weekend in Minnesota. "He made some big-time throws," Rodgers said. Peterson is elite, and is good enough to make the Vikings a respectable team all by himself. But as Detroit Lions legendary running back Barry Sanders can attest, being a one-man show can only take a team so far. It will be up to Ponder to give Peterson enough help if the Vikings are going to have a chance to beat the Packers in the playoffs this weekend. Follow Paul Imig on Twitter.

Elbow sidelines Ponder against Packers

GREEN BAY, Wis. Minnesota Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder is inactive for Saturday night's playoff game at Green Bay, unable to get over the sore right elbow he hurt in last week's regular-season finale against the Packers. Joe Webb will start for Minnesota. NBC first reported the news on its broadcast of Saturday's earlier playoff game between the Cincinnati Bengals...

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Packers Bar Hangs This Amazing Adrian Peterson Bar Sign

Packers fans aren’t going to let Adrian Peterson forget just how close he was to breaking Eric Dickerson’s record. Nine yards short. That’s it. This banner was spotted by KARE-11 (Minneapolis-St.Paul) reporter Keith Leventhal at a Packers bar earlier today. It’s been making the rounds on the internet today and new developments are surfacing that Peterson himself might be...

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Adrian Peterson is in the defense's head, with that unit focusing too much on the Vikings' prized running back and too little on playing assignments and fundamentals. The Packers have owned Peterson on 48 of his carries in the two games. It's the other seven carries that have been crushing.

Adrian Peterson is Probable

Minnesota running back Adrian Peterson was a full participant in Friday's practice and is listed as probable for Saturday's playoff game.Fantasy Spin:He has been on the injury report for one reason or another for most of the season, but that didn't keep him from coming within eight yards of Eric Dickerson's NFL single-season rushing record. The Vikings star running...

NFL Wild Card Saturday Picks – January 5, 2013

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GO! AND the final game Bret Beilema will get blamed for at U-W.  I wonder if he watched the game?  I am sure he did.  But how?  A bowl of cheetos with Jen and himself?  A party?   at BW3′s and just watched it with the other bowl games on?   Or could he not bear his former family losing and playing without him? Sometimes all you have to see is the picture… The Vikings...

Packers vs. Vikings Part 3: The Wildcard

As all the sports world knows, the Green Bay Packers will face the Minnesota Vikings for the second time in six days tomorrow evening on the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field. The Packers won the first game several weeks ago, and the Vikes took the game on Sunday. This game? Well, it will be cold. But as Packer fans we hope that, in the end, the ViQueens feel much colder much longer...
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