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Peterson leads Vikings over Falcons and back into 1st in the North

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Minnesota Vikings 20

Atlanta Falcons 10

Adrian Peterson ran for 158 yards and two touchdowns to lead the Vikings to a 20-10 victory over the Falcons in Atlanta Sunday afternoon.

The defense held Atlanta to just one field goal for most of the game, allowing just one touchdown late in the fourth quarter, and stymied Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan and star receiver Julio Jones.

Peterson scored his first touchdown on a 1-yard run in the first quarter. The second came late in the fourth quarter on a 35-yard run, to put an exclamation point on the game.

Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater completed 20 of 28 for 174 yards and one interception.

Minnesota's defense played aggressively, forcing three turnovers and virtually shutting down the Atlanta offense.

Linebacker Anthony Barr forced two fumbles, including a pivotal one that came with 4:39 left in the game that stopped a Falcons drive in Vikings territory. He also forced Falcons running back Tevin Coleman to cough up the ball in the first quarter at the end of a 46-yard run.

Atlanta scored its only touchdown with 1:30 to go, to make the score 20-10, but it was too little too late.

Minnesota led 10-3 at halftime after the Peterson touchdown and a field goal by Blair Walsh; he missed a 51-yard attempt as time expired in the second quarter.

Atlanta got the ball on the opening possession in the third quarter, and they put together a long drive downfield that ate up seven minutes on the clock. The Falcons were threatening to score a TD when the Vikings' Terence Newman intercepted a Ryan pass in the end zone to stop their momentum.

The Vikings scored another field goal on the ensuing drive to go up 13-3.

The Falcons started the season by winning five games in a row, but since then they've gone 1-5.

The Vikings are now 8-3 and remain in first place in the NFC North.

They host the Seattle Seahawks next Sunday at TCF Bank Stadium. Kickoff is at noon.

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