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GREEN BAY, Wis. -- The Vikings signed receiver Bernard Berrian in free agency to give them a vertical threat that would open up running lanes for tailback Adrian Peterson. If Berrian were established as a legitimate deep threat, the theory went, opponents wouldn't be able to stack eight or nine players on the line of scrimmage to stop Peterson.
The Vikings are doing their best to utilize Berrian in tonight's season opener, but thus far it hasn't been successful. Quarterback Tarvaris Jackson didn't complete any of the three deep passes he threw Berrian's way in the first half, although officials flagged Packers cornerback Al Harris for a 26-yard pass interference on one of them. Jackson underthrew Berrian on another and Harris got away with a physical play on the third.
Pass interferences and near-misses won't cause any defense to alter its approach. Until Jackson shows he can hit Berrian in stride for a few downfield plays, Peterson will continue to face stacked defenses.