Minneapolis, MN – Nick Novak nailed a 45-yard field goal as time expired and the San Diego Chargers edged the Minnesota Vikings, 12-10, in NFL preseason action Friday night.
Sage Rosenfels found Matt Asiata in the end zone with just 1:54 remaining to put the Vikings ahead 10-9, but the Chargers marched down the field in the final minute to steal the win.
Charlie Whitehurst went just 8-for-18 through the air for 82 yards and Michael Spurlock caught three passes for 46 yards for the Chargers, who missed the playoffs each of the past two seasons.
Rosenfels went 6-for-6 for 51 yards through the air, Christian Ponder was 9- for-16 for 115 yards with an interception, and Percy Harvin hauled in two balls for 53 yards for the Vikings, who fell to 1-2 in the preseason.
San Diego Quarterback Phillip Rivers and tight end Antonio Gates sat out Friday and Minnesota running back Adrian Peterson was also inactive.
The team announced on Thursday that Peterson would miss the remainder of the preseason.
In 2011 the former first-round selection in the 2007 NFL draft rushed for 970 yards and 12 touchdowns before tearing his anterior cruciate ligament and medial collateral ligament in his left knee on December 24.
Peterson underwent surgery December 31 to repair his knee. He was taken off the physically unable to perform list on Aug. 12, and is hopeful to start the team's season opener on Sept. 9.
The Chargers took a 3-0 lead in the first quarter when Nate Kaeding split the uprights from 50 yards out after a 13-play, 37-yard drive stalled at the Vikings' 32-yard line.
San Diego recovered a fumble in Minnesota territory, but was unable to find the end zone on its ensuing possession. Whitehurst found Spurlock down the middle for 22 yards to put the Chargers on the Vikings' 17, but San Diego was unable to convert on third-and-nine and settled for a 34-yard Nick Novak field goal.
The Vikings were able to get on the board with a 29-yard Blair Walsh field goal right before halftime.
Kaeding nailed a 54-yarder in the third quarter to put San Diego up 9-3.