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Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson (28) breaks one against the Carolina Panthers during the third quarter of an NFL football Sunday in Charlotte, N.C. AP Photo/Nell Redmond

Vikings hold on to beat Panthers 24-21

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Vikings hold on to beat Panthers 24-21
Willmar Minnesota 2208 Trott Ave. SW / P.O. Box 839 56201

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) -- Ryan Longwell kicked a 31-yard field goal with 2:43 left in the game to lift the Minnesota Vikings to a 24-21 victory Sunday over the Carolina Panthers.

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Cam Newton put the Panthers (2-6) in position to tie the game in the final two minutes. He completed a 44-yard pass to Brandon LaFell on fourth-and-15, but Olindo Mare was wide left with a 31-yard field goal attempt with 26 seconds left.

Adrian Peterson led the way with 162 yards total yards and scored two touchdowns as the Vikings (2-6) snapped a two-game losing streak.

Christian Ponder won the battle of rookie quarterbacks, completing 18 of 28 passes for 236 yards and one touchdown.

Newton threw a career-high three touchdown passes, but had two costly fumbles on blindside hits that led to a pair of Minnesota touchdowns in the first half. Carolina's offense sputtered throughout most of the second half, going three-and-out three times.

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