Sam Bradford dominated to lead the Minnesota Vikings to a 29-19 win over the New Orleans Saints in the NFL on Monday.
Bradford, who set a single-season completion record last season, was nearly flawless in the first regular-season game at U.S. Bank Stadium, host of Super Bowl LII.
The former number one overall pick was 27-of-32 passing for 346 yards and three touchdowns as the Vikings spoiled Adrian Peterson's return to Minnesota.
Bradford looked more like Drew Brees in the pocket, leading the Vikings on a three-play, 74-yard touchdown drive and 10-play 95-yard touchdown drive late in the second quarter to give the Vikings a 16-6 half-time lead.
Bradford, who became just the second Vikings QB to throw for at least 300 yards and three TDs in a season opener, capped both drives with touchdown passes to Stefon Diggs, who was honouring Vikings great Randy Moss with a special pair of purple cleats.
BRADFORD HAILS TEAM-MATES
"I think our guys up front played great tonight," Bradford told ESPN after the game.
"I had all the time in the world. They set the tone for us, when they play like that we are going to be a really good offense."
NO IMPACT BY PETERSON
During Peterson's 10 seasons with the Vikings, coaches never let their own defenders tackle him to the ground in practice. They finally got their chance on the first play of the game but the 2012 MVP dragged multiple defenders to a nine-yard gain. It would be Peterson's longest run of the night, as he appeared to be frustrated with coach Sean Payton with his lack of snaps.
Peterson, who signed a two-year deal worth $7million with New Orleans in April after being released by Minnesota, finished with just 18 yards on six carries. While he was expecting a warm welcome in his return to Minneapolis, he received more boos.
After releasing Peterson, the Vikings drafted running back Dalvin Cook in the second round of the 2017 NFL Draft. Cook earned the start Monday but failed to impress early against the Saints' makeshift defense. Cook's first seven touches totalled just 11 yards but he finished with a total of 127 rushing yards, breaking Peterson's rookie record for yardage in a season opener.
|BREAKING NEWS: Sunderland target Coleman steps down as Wales manager|
|Memorable Ashes Moments: Harmison sends down woeful opening wide as England´s defence wilts|
|Conte´s wife tells him to grow a beard – Conte grows a beard|
|Simeone rules out Everton job, promising ´a couple of years at least´ at Atletico|
|Pique to miss Barcelona´s Leganes trip over personal matter|
|Serena Williams reportedly marries Alexis Ohanian in New Orleans|
|UEFA closes Roma ´monkey chanting´ case|
|Swinson set to miss Six Nations after finger surgery|
|Don´t worry about Messi renewal, Valverde tells Barcelona fans|
|Cheika disrespected referee - Jones|
|´Griezmann? We´ll see´ – Valverde won´t rule out Barcelona pursuit of Atletico star|
|Cardinals & Larry Fitzgerald agree to 2018 contract extension|
|Uncapped Enever replaces injured Coleman for Twickenham clash|
|Goffin overcomes slow start & Thiem to set up Federer semi|
|Unsworth surprised to see Allardyce snub Everton|
|Six-week stadium ban for Sale boss Diamond|
|Mourinho has ´immense respect´ for Benitez|
|Howe backs Defoe to make World Cup squad|
|Everton speculation out of my control - Silva focusing on Hornets|
|Conte concerned by Manchester City´s breakaway lead|
|Man City results ´perfect´, but Guardiola demands improvement|
|David Luiz back in Chelsea squad, Conte confirms|
|Recovered Klopp offers Liverpool fitness update|
|Guardiola confident Aguero in ´perfect´ condition despite hospital trip|
|Ibrahimovic, Pogba and Rojo back for Manchester United|
|Fleetwood and Rose look set for desert duel, Fitzpatrick leads in Dubai|
|Heynckes compiling list of potential successors|
|Modric & Carvajal fit for Madrid derby|
|Bayern begin talks over Wagner deal|
|Pulis angered as Chadli sidelined for ´foreseeable future´|
|Neymar to join Ronaldo at Real Madrid? Zidane speaks out on PSG star|
|Edinburgh banking on Barclay after signing Scotland captain|
|Guardiola & Sane complete Man City award double|
|Five-try Holmes makes history as Kangaroos batter Samoa|
|Brave Chapecoense secure top-flight status|
|Mooney seals Australia Women´s Ashes victory|
|Tottenham have overtaken Arsenal as north London´s best - Sherwood|
|Brisbane Roar 3 Melbourne City 1: Papadopoulos at the double as hosts finally win|
|Seaman: Wenger must start Lacazette against Tottenham|
|I am more than just a goal machine - Ronaldo ignores Real Madrid criticism|
|Pujara shows resistance on another rain-affected day|
|Skriniar not interested in Barcelona speculation|
|France need Benzema, says Aulas|
|Warne: Australia look confused ahead of Ashes|
|Donald recovering after being hospitalised with chest pains|
|Youngs braced for ´confrontational and confident´ Wallabies|
|The Breakdown: A statistical look at Saturday´s rugby internationals|
|Van Dijk could leave Southampton in January|
|Sanchez snubbed Barcelona switch - Osorio|
|Malan posts century as England impress in Townsville|
|Atletico Madrid v Real Madrid: Simeone and Zidane face dangerous, defining Derbi|
|Aubameyang baffled by Dortmund suspension|
|Harden scores 48 points as Rockets soar|
|George, Hauritz and Tendulkar – Ashes surprise Paine´s last Test|
|He´s a class player - Hussey approves of Marsh recall for Ashes|
|Brown stars as Steelers crush Titans|
|Smith backs ´terrific´ Paine ahead of Ashes|
|Celtics claim 14th straight victory with comeback win over Warriors|
|WATCH: Brown makes incredible helmet catch for Steelers|
|´Surprised´ Paine thought Test career was over|
|Steelers QB Roethlisberger reaches new career milestones|
|Pochettino lauds Wenger longevity as he eyes 20 years at Spurs|
|Ronaldo: Real Madrid don´t fear PSG|
|Australia´s Paine pick an amazing Ashes gamble|
|Bancroft demanded Ashes spot, others were mediocre – Hohns|
|Zenit´s Mancini not thinking about Italy job|
|Altuve, Stanton named MVPs|
|Wenger advises Pochettino to fight the ´fear´ of winning trophies|
|Kirk leads RSM Classic after fine 63|
|Red Wings defenseman Witkowski handed 10-game ban after brawl|