Daunte Culpepper threw for 300 yards and three touchdowns and the Minnesota Vikings got back on track yesterday with a victory at home over the mistake-prone New Orleans Saints.
The Vikings took advantage of two Saints turnovers deep in their end to take a 24-0 lead in the first half, but the Saints made a game of it in the fourth quarter.
Deuce McAllister's one-yard touchdown run with under 12 minutes left made it 24-16 before another mistake by New Orleans put the game out of reach.
After a holding penalty, the Vikings had a second and 17 at the Saints 37-yard line. Culpepper threw a 10-yard completion to Jermaine Wiggins, but Saints DB Dwight Smith gave them a first down when he was flagged for taunting Wiggins after tackling him.
That led to a 28-yard field goal by Paul Edinger, his second of four in the game, and Saints QB Aaron Brooks was picked off by Antoine Winfield on the next possession to seal it.
The Saints committed four turnovers and 14 penalties, one of which negated an interception in Vikings territory and another that took away a punt return for a touchdown by Donte Stallworth.
Mewelde Moore had 101 yards rushing for the Vikings.