The Vikings got off to a cold start on a cold night in Charlotte.
The offense was able to muster just 7 points in the first half, and lost another three on a rare Ryan Longwell missed field goal.
The line had some trouble handling the Carolina edge rushers, the team squandered some good field position.
The defense made a big play when Jared Allen came clean and forced Matt Moore to fumble, but on another Panthers drive, were dinked-and-dunked to death by the same Mr. Moore, who found a nice rhythm with Steve Smith.
The Panthers helped the Vikings out with penalties and by failing to convert the PAT on their one touchdown. A false start took away a shot at 3 at the end of the second quarter, allowing the Vikes to stumble into the break with the lead.
Adrian Peterson was key on the Vikings’ touchdown drive, ending it with a ferocious short scoring run on which he fought off a pair of defenders who seemed to have him stood up.