Peterson starts, but could not help avoid big loss.
The Carolina Panthers sealed a dominant 35-10 win over the Minnesota Vikings at the Mall of America Field on Sunday, with quarterback Cam Newton throwing three touchdown passes.
While headlines ahead of the game centred around Vikings star Adrian Peterson’s decision to play just days after news broke of his two-year-old son dying, he ended the game with 62 yards on 10 carries and 21 yards on three receptions.
Head coach Leslie Frazier praised his running back for the commitment he showed in playing on Sunday, but ultimately there was little that could be done to avoid a heavy defeat to the visiting Panthers.
Newton went 20 of 36 for 242 yards with three touchdown passes and ran for another score as Carolina romped past their opponents to move to 2-3 for the season while Minnesota slip to 1-4.
Panthers head coach Ron Rivera praised his quarterback for his impressive display after the game, and believes that his development is a process that will continue to see him improve with time.
In contrast, Matt Cassel, starting in place of Christian Ponder despite his return from injury, threw two interceptions with the Panthers responding each time with a touchdown.
However, he was in defiant mood after the loss despite the potential of being replaced for the next game with either Ponder of Josh Freeman standing in the wings waiting to come in.
The Vikings head to New York to take on the winless Giants next Tuesday, while the Panthers will hope to continue their winning streak when they face the St. Louis Rams on Sunday.