Two of the NFL’s toughest runners dueled in Seattle on Sunday, with the Seahawks’ Marshawn Lynch and the Vikings’ Adrian Peterson both making life miserable for the opposing defenses. But only one man’s team could win, and when it was over it was Seattle, powered by Lynch’s big day, that came away on top.
Lynch had 26 carries for 124 yards and a touchdown, plus another two catches for 26 yards, and he was his usual powerful, physically imposing self: Lynch broke tackles, ran people over and generally looked like a beast. He powered the Seahawks to a 30-20 win.
But Peterson had an even better day in defeat: Peterson ran 17 times for 182 yards and two touchdowns, and he also burst into the open for a 74-yard run that showed as clearly as anything he’s done this season that he’s all the way back from the torn ACL that ended his 2011 season.
Unfortunately for Peterson, the Vikings got absolutely nothing from quarterback Christian Ponder, who completed 11 of 22 passes for 63 yards and had a fourth-quarter interception that pretty much sealed Minnesota’s fate. Ponder has shown promise this year, but he laid an egg today in Seattle.
Seahawks rookie quarterback Russell Wilson, however, had a very efficient and effective game, completing 16 of 24 passes for 173 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions. Wilson continues to show that he’s capable of playing well in big games, something the Seahawks are going to need him to do a lot in the next two months.
Seattle’s win leaves both the Vikings and the Seahawks at 5-4 and smack dab in the middle of the NFC postseason race. With seven games to go, both of these teams will want to ride their running backs toward the playoffs.