History shows that the New England Patriots haven’t gone 0-2 to start an NFL season in more than a decade. That doesn’t bode well for the Minnesota Vikings, who host the Patriots today at 1pm EST / 10am PST in TCF Bank Stadium. Of course, having Adrian Peterson deactivated for today’s Patriots game doesn’t help either.
Peterson was indicted Friday in Texas for reckless or negligent injury to a child. The ruling led Minnesota to deactivate him for today’s Patriots / Vikings game even though it will hurt their offense. The All-Pro running back has rushed for 10,115 yards during the past seven seasons. Last week against the St. Louis Rams he carried the ball 21 times for 75 yards.
The Patriots last week allowed 191 rushing yards in their 20-33 loss to the Miami Dolphins. Peterson could’ve exploited that apparent weakness in today’s game, but the Vikings will instead pin their hopes on running back Matt Asiata, who ran for 115 yards in last year’s final game and averaged 4.9 yards per carry this preseason.
Yet even without Peterson on the field, New England is still only favored to win today’s Patriots / Vikings game by three points. At least they’re favored.
Last week against the Dolphins the Patriots played poorly on both offense and defense. The former was especially odd, as quarterback Tom Brady isn’t known for coming out flat. Last week’s loss was the Patriots’ first season-opening loss since 2003.
But after one week New England is ranked just 25th in total offense, with the 18th-ranked passing game and 21st ground attack. Brady had Rob Gronkowski back for the first time last week, and he was a productive target in limited action. The All-Pro tight end caught four receptions for 40 yards and will likely see more reps in today’s game.
You can see if Brady, Gronk and the Pats cover the three-point spread by watching on TV on CBS. Kickoff is scheduled for 1:00pm EST / 10:00am PST. You can also watch Patriots vs Vikings game online free live NFL week 2 using the CBS Sports website or DirecTV’s website. The latter requires you to have an NFL Sunday Ticket MAX package, which requires a subscription. All subscribers can watch the game online free via the DirecTV live stream if they’re stuck using a smartphone, tablet or PC.