MINNEAPOLIS Running back Adrian Peterson lined up in the backfield for the first snap of the Minnesota Vikings' critical home game Sunday against the Chicago Bears and looked out over a defense focused to stop him.
This Sunday was like any other. Minnesota has the league's worst passing attack and Peterson is on his way to the best season of his standout career. Teams have been lining up to stop Peterson for years. Nine men near the line of scrimmage, 10, it's seemingly doesn't matter in one of the most remarkable seasons for a running back in NFL history.
Just like Sunday, when Peterson started inside and popped off a 51-yard run on the first play, the league's leading rusher has overcome defensive fronts focused on him, just as he has made his amazing return from major knee surgery at the end of December.
"It's all willpower," Peterson said. "They pretty much know we're going to run the ball. Offensive line knows it, and the receivers...