Dominating defense helps Vikings best Titans

Published On: Oct 07 2012 08:29:55 PM EDT
MINNEAPOLIS -

All-purpose threat Percy Harvin totaled 116 yards and two touchdowns, and a dominating defensive effort helped upstart Minnesota roll past listless Tennessee.

Christian Ponder threw two touchdowns and rookie Blair Walsh kicked three field goals for the Vikings (4-1), who surpassed their win total from all of last season. Minnesota shut down Tennessee (1-4) star running back Chris Johnson, who ran for just 24 yards on 15 carries, after breaking out for 141 yards against Houston last week.

Johnson wasn't the only one that struggled. In fact, at one point Harvin had more total yards than the Titans. Matt Hasselbeck, filling in for the injured Jake Locker, was 26-of-43 for 200 yards with a touchdown and an interception.

Minnesota was in control from the start. Harvin's 4-yard touchdown run capped a nine-play, 91-yard drive and gave the Vikings a 7-0 lead late in the first quarter.

Walsh added field goals of 42, 36 and 26 yards to make it 16-0 at the half. Late in the third, Harvin caught a pass from Ponder, bounced off a pair of defenders and scored from 10 yards out, giving the Vikings a 20-7 lead.

Ponder entered the game as the only quarterback yet to throw an interception, but was picked off on consecutive attempts - once before halftime and again at the start of the second half. He finished 25-of-35 for 258 yards.

GAME NOTEBOOK: Johnson ran for 12 yards on eight carries and lost a fumble in the first half. ... Commissioner Roger Goodell was in attendance. ... Harvin had more total yards (95) in the first half than the entire Titans' team (88). ... Minnesota rookie safety Harrison Smith was ejected in the second quarter for shoving an official during a scrum.

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