(above, Donovan McNabb doing what he does best these days…handing the ball to Adrian Peterson and getting out of the way)

If you think starting the 2011 NFL season with a pair of consecutive losses represents too slim a body of work to condemn the Minnesota Vikings to disaster status, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune’s Jim Souhan proposes, “two games is a ‘small sample size’…but then so is a shot glass filled with arsenic.” Salut!

In two consecutive second halves, quarterback Donovan McNabb has put the arm in Armageddon. In San Diego, he threw for 2 yards in the second half. Sunday, he threw for 75 while again looking uncomfortable in the pocket and too often inaccurate.

Sunday, the Vikings rushed for 186 yards. Peterson gained 120 and two touchdowns while proving more adept than ever at reading blocks and making deft moves in the hole.

Again, his efforts were squandered by a passing offense whose origins may be found on cave walls. Although McNabb’s numbers were hardly embarrassing, his only completion for more than 20 yards came on a screen pass that Toby Gerhart carried for 42.

What has to be troubling inside the locker room is that Peterson’s brilliance has positioned the Vikings to win two games, and the rest of the offense has squandered them both.