This will be short and to the point. If the Vikings use Adrian Peterson as a passing weapon against the New Orleans Saints tonight, they will win the game. If they do not, they will lose.
Using Peterson as a passing weapon means employing him on screen plays (with him, rather than Naufahu Tahi as the target) a minimum of four times. If Peterson has demonstrated anything in his time in Minnesota it is that he does far better in space than when he has to create his own room, particularly when he is asked to do the latter behind a creaky, sometimes immobile offensive line.
Using Peterson out of the backfield and in the flat is worth six points to Minnesota for every two successful completions. Using Peterson strictly as a running back, particularly given his poor blocking skills, makes the Vikings predictable.
If Childress can stop moving back in time, the Vikings could well take a step forward in their progression toward NFC front-runners.
Up Next: Postgame.