The Vikings get to open the season at home for 2012, and they welcome in the Jaguars. NFL odds favor the Minnesota Vikings by -3 ½ and even though the Jaguars have their best offensive player back, the Vikings might see only limited snaps with Adrian Peterson here in Week 1, if at all. Will the Jaguars be able to come in and steal a win, or will he Vikings rally around seeing their best player back on the field?
Peterson has yet to be cleared to play this week, but if he does, the Vikings say he will get a limited number of carries. He obviously won’t be back to full speed by any means, but Peterson is now officially close to being back. Who knows if he will ever be 100% again, but if he is anywhere close, he is still one of the best runners in the league.
The Jags missed their star, Maurice Jones-Drew all throughout camp and the preseason, but he reported to Jags camp and is set to be Jacksonville’s third down back against the Vikings this Sunday. MJD was probably trying to get some of Adrian Peterson’s money. That’s the whole point he held out.
If Christian Ponder can stay under control and manage the game, the Vikings have a great shot at winning. If the Vikings start to turn the ball over, that’s when it’s time to worry. Ponder had a couple of three interception games last season, and Jacksonville was 8th in the league in defending the pass in 2011. The Jags held opponents to an average of around 200 yards passing last season.
The defense is going to play well. The Jags are not an offensive powerhouse. This game will be close.