Chargers 17

(4-4, 1-3 away)

Vikings 35

(3-5, 2-2 home)

Coverage: CBS

1:00 PM ET, November 4, 2007


1 2 3 4 T
SD 7 7 0 317
MIN 7 0 14 1435

Top Performers

Passing: P. Rivers (SD) - 197 YDS, 1 INT

Rushing: A. Peterson (MIN) - 30 CAR, 296 YDS, 3 TD

Receiving: S. Rice (MIN) - 4 REC, 66 YDS, 1 TD

Eight games into career, Peterson owns single-game rushing record

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- Minutes after Adrian Peterson lost a fourth-quarter fumble at the San Diego 20-yard line, the ball was back in his hands.

He rumbled around right end, paused to set up his blocks, and sprinted 46 yards up the sideline for Minnesota's game-clinching touchdown.

This rookie doesn't make many mistakes. He simply sets a lot of records.

Purple And Pure Gold
Adrian Peterson
The sure-fire candidate for NFL Rookie of the Year now must be considered an MVP threat. In the eighth game of his pro career, Adrian Peterson broke the NFL single-game rushing record. The top five rushing games in league history:

Player Opp. Carries TDs
296 Peterson, MIN S.D. 30 3
295 Lewis, BAL CLE

30 2
278 Dillon, CIN DEN 22 2
275 Payton, CHI MIN 40 1
273 Simpson, BUF DET 29 2

Racing to the NFL's single-game rushing record of 296 yards at the midpoint of his first pro season, Peterson carried the Vikings to a 35-17 victory over the Chargers on Sunday.

He didn't realize the significance of his performance until his benign 3-yard carry took the clock under 60 seconds and sent him past Jamal Lewis' 295-yard performance against Cleveland in 2003 for the best game a running back has ever had in this league.

"Oh, no. I was out playing ball," Peterson said. "I wasn't thinking about the record at all."

There are more for him to ponder.

• On 30 carries, Peterson topped 200 yards rushing for the second time in one season, a feat no other rookie has accomplished.

• Peterson scored two of his three touchdowns and gained 253 yards in the second half, helping the Vikings rally from a 14-7 deficit. They trailed at the half after Antonio Cromartie plucked a missed field goal out of the air and returned it 109 yards for a touchdown, the longest play in NFL history.

• Peterson reached 1,036 yards rushing this season, a pace that would smash Eric Dickerson's rookie record of 1,808 yards set in 1983. Dickerson's all-time record of 2,105 yards in 1984 is also in reach.

"I set my bar high, because I know anything is possible when you continue to work hard," Peterson said.

Minnesota (3-5) pressured Philip Rivers into one of the worst games of his career and made sure LaDainian Tomlinson didn't come close to matching Peterson's performance.

Tomlinson rushed 16 times for 40 yards, and Rivers went 19-for-42 for 197 yards with one interception. He lost one of his three fumbles, two of which were dropped snaps.

"It's not defense or offense. It's all of us," Rivers said. "Obviously we were given plenty of opportunities, but we didn't do enough."

San Diego (4-4) lost a November game for the first time since 2003 and reverted to the shaky play on both sides of the ball that led to a 1-3 start. The defense that ranked seventh in the league against the run was thoroughly beaten.

"I have been in this league too long to use the word embarrassed," coach Norv Turner said.

Quarterback Tarvaris Jackson got hurt again, and backup Brooks Bollinger was much better in the second half. That included a 40-yard touchdown pass to Sidney Rice that put the Vikings in front 21-14.

But it's easy to look good handing off to Peterson.

"I felt like I was back at Wisconsin," said Bollinger, who handed off to Heisman Trophy winner Ron Dayne plenty of times as a freshman in 1999.

After Peterson's fumble, the Chargers recovered with 10 minutes left and trailed only 21-17. Minnesota's defense, which came into the game allowing the most yards passing in the league, forced another three-and-out and San Diego's eighth punt of the afternoon.

Mewelde Moore returned it 42 yards, and Peterson needed only one play to put the game away and again show off his unique blend of power, speed and instinct.

Rivers threw an interception, Chester Taylor followed with a short touchdown run, and the Vikings suddenly led by 18 -- reaching 35 points for the first time in 24 games under coach Brad Childress.

"That's the way I like to play football," Childress said. "I do have a healthy respect for being able to run it and take somebody's will from them."

The Vikings took possession at their 20 with 2:24 remaining in the first half with all three timeouts, but they mismanaged the clock again and let it move under 40 seconds when Jackson ran from the pocket. He was knocked out of the game with an apparent neck injury during the tackle.

Bollinger came in and moved them close enough for Ryan Longwell to try a 57-yard field goal. It was on line, but just short -- leaving Cromartie room to leap and catch the ball without stepping out.

Cromartie ran it back all the way, without being touched, and in the process gained 18 more yards than his team did on offense in the entire half. Childress was so mad he chucked his headset off, but that was a short rant.

Rivers, on the other hand, spent most of the game complaining to the officials. The Chargers continually cost themselves field position with ill-timed penalties and made plenty of mistakes on both sides of the ball.

"That's part of the game," Rivers said, downplaying his emotions. "I was frustrated the way we were playing. We just didn't make enough plays to win, and that's what every game is."

Game notes

Peterson's 315 total yards were more than nine of the 17 other teams who played in the same time slot Sunday: Kansas City (234), San Diego (229), Denver (303), San Francisco (251), Atlanta (286), Arizona (195), Cincinnati (299), Carolina (199) and Tennessee (236). ... Tomlinson, in just his seventh NFL season, passed Jim Brown for fourth place on the NFL's list for rushing touchdowns with 107. Emmitt Smith, Marcus Allen and Walter Payton are the top three.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


Team Stat Comparison

1st Downs1426
Passing 1st downs
Rushing 1st downs
1st downs from penalties
3rd down efficiency
4th down efficiency
Total Plays6366
Total Yards229528
Yards per play3.68.0
Total Drives1414
Yards per pass
Interceptions thrown
Sacks-Yards Lost
Rushing Attempts
Yards per rush
Red Zone (Made-Att)1-32-3
Fumbles lost
Interceptions thrown
Defensive / Special Teams TDs10

Passing Leaders


Rushing Leaders


Receiving Leaders


Scoring Summary

sdTD5:48LaDainian Tomlinson, 1 yd run (Nate Kaeding kick is good)
Drive info: 10 plays, 53 yds, 5:39
minTD2:52Adrian Peterson, 1 yd run (Ryan Longwell kick is good)
Drive info: 5 plays, 39 yds, 2:55
minTD0:00Missed field goal, 109 yd touchdown return by Antonio Cromartie (Nate Kaeding kick is good)
Drive info: 1 plays, 109 yds, 0:00
minTD12:55Adrian Peterson, 64 yd run (Ryan Longwell kick is good)
Drive info: 6 plays, 83 yds, 2:16
minTD3:15Sidney Rice, 40 yd pass from Brooks Bollinger (Ryan Longwell kick is good)
Drive info: 6 plays, 81 yds, 3:37
sdFG14:09Nate Kaeding 36 yd Field Goal
Drive info: 10 plays, 63 yds, 3:58
minTD7:54Adrian Peterson, 46 yd run (Ryan Longwell kick is good)
Drive info: 1 plays, 46 yds, 0:00
minTD4:33Chester Taylor, 2 yd run (Ryan Longwell kick is good)
Drive info: 5 plays, 40 yds, 3:02