Floyd hurt, Ponder picked, Patterson impressive, Vikings fall to Texans 27-13


Adrian Peterson didn't play, so there are likely a very short list of things Vikings fans will care about coming out of preseason game number one.

1. Quarterback Christian Ponder, and for some, the man who hopes to push him, Matt Cassel.

2. Did anyone notable get injured?

3. Is Cordarrelle Patterson a stud?

Instead of a nauseating play-by-play of preseason game one, allow us to fill you in on those notes starting with the man that some believe is the only thing standing between the Vikings and a deep playoff run.

While Ponder didn't see much action (just a series), one of his two throws is sure to get purple faithful riled up, specifically the second and last toss of his evening.

It was his last because it was an interception, an overthrow of Jerome Simpson that deflected off his hand and went into the waiting arms of safety Shiloh Keo. He would not have a chance for redemption, as coach Leslie Frazier stood true to his word that Ponder would only play one series.

Matt Cassel came on in relief of Ponder, going 12-19 for 212 yards, while mixing in an interception of his own and a 61-yard touchdown toss to reserve RB/TE Zach Line, most of which came after the catch. Still, the big plays (Cassel also hit WR Stephen Burton on a 56-yard completion) are what Vikings fans have been clamoring for out of Ponder for two years, and surely they'll point to Cassel's ability to deliver them as a mark against Ponder.

Let's move to injuries. The one that stood out was rookie defensive tackle and first round pick Sharrif Floyd, who lay on the ground for a few minutes while getting his leg examined, before walking off the field on his own power early in the contest. He did not return, although the injury did not appear serious, and at first look the only injury of note.

Now ultra-athletic but allegedly raw first round talent Cordarrelle Patterson.

No worries there, as the wideout received very high marks from experts throughout the game, posting 54 receiving yards, while tacking on 50 return yards. He also received rousing ovation after rousing ovation every time he touched the ball, a clear sign that Minnesota fans hope they're watching a star in the making.

On the other side, Patterson's fellow first round pick, wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, turned in an impressive touchdown reception in the second quarter, a 34-yard snag while skying over a helpless Vikings defensive back.

Needless to say, both teams will be walking away feeling good about their new playmakers on the outside.

All week the Vikings were rightfully saying the final result didn't matter, they just wanted to get a look at their depth at each spot.

We agree, but if you care, here's all to gory details of preseason game one. The short version: Houston got two fourth quarter touchdowns and won 27-13.

Minor details, it's preseason, there are no winners, just losers like us that sat through all four quarters.

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