The Minnesota Vikings opened at home for the first time in five seasons and gave their fans something worth waiting for in a thrilling, 26-23, overtime victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars at Mall of America Field in Minneapolis. In a game that featured more kicking than touchdowns, Vikings rookie kicker Blair Walsh hit four field goals, including a 55-yarder to send the game into overtime as time ran out, and a 38-yard game-winner on the first possession of the extra session.

The Jaguars (0-1) had a chance to tie or win the game in overtime, but QB Blaine Gabbert overthrew Laurent Robinson on fourth-and-2 at the Jaguars' 31-yard line. Both offenses were rusty at times -- Minnesota (1-0) early and Jacksonville late -- and the defenses gave up a number of big plays that kept the game close until the final score was in the books.

The passing of Gabbert and the hard running of “backup” RB Maurice Jones-Drew controlled much of the first half, helping the Jaguars jump out to a 9-0 lead before the Vikings used their 2-minute offense to climb back into the game on an Adrian Peterson 2-yard run. Neither Peterson nor Jones-Drew were expected to play a lot, but each carried the load for his respective team, giving both teams a chance to win the game late.

Peterson, who is eight months removed from ACL and MCL knee surgery, ran the ball 17 times for 84 yards and two touchdowns. In addition, he passed former Vikings RB Robert Smith for the all-time franchise rushing record. Peterson ran hard enough to make coach Leslie Frazier -- a victim of a Super Bowl ACL injury during his playing days -- wonder facetiously if Peterson had been faking the injury.

When the game turned: K Blair Walsh’s 55-yard kick at the end of regulation. After leading most of the second half, the Vikings gave up the lead with 20 seconds to go on a Gabbert to WR Cecil Shorts 39-yard touchdown pass. It looked like a repeat of last season (when the Vikings lost seven times late in games) until Vikings QB Christian Ponder took the Vikings 32 yards in three plays to set up Walsh’s 55-yard game-tying field goal. The momentum returned to Minnesota, they took the kickoff in OT and marched down the field for Walsh’s 38-yard game winner.

“Before the kick, I was just prepping, trying to make sure my trajectory was right, because I knew it was going to be a long kick no matter what we did,” Walsh said of the 55-yard kick. “The snap and hold were perfect. I got a good hit on it and it went in.”

Highlight moments: The Jaguars needed a touchdown late in the fourth quarter for a chance to win the game and second-year QB Gabbert kept his poise to get it. On fourth and 3 at the Vikings 49, Gabbert hit WR Justin Blackmon for a first down, and on the next play he hit Shorts on a 39-yard pass in which he had defender Chris Cook turning several times. Shorts had to make a quick turn and dive for a ball, then stretch into the end zone.

Top-shelf performances: WR Percy Harvin -- 6 catches for 84 yards, 5 rushes for 20 yards and 3 kickoff returns for 88 yards. Overshadowed by the return of Peterson and his two rushing touchdowns, Harvin ground out yards whenever he got his hands on the ball and was the impetus that jump-started a sluggish Vikings offense.

“I was impressed with Percy--the way he carried the ball and caught the ball was unbelievable,” LB Chad Greenway said. “I think he was really the guy that got us going offensively."

What they said about the blocked extra point:

  • Vikings LT Matt Kalil -- “I’m 6-7. I just tried to do anything to contribute to the team, and luckily it helped out.”

What they said about the Cecil Shorts TD that gave Jacksonville the lead:

  • Vikings CB Chris Cook, who was covering on the play -- “They just made a play. We called the coverage; I played the coverage and they made a good play. That is the life of a corner. Sometimes you are going to get beat. You just got to go on and play the next play."

Numbers you should know: Gabbert was 23 of 39 for 260 yards. The 260 yards were a career high for Gabbert. “I thought (Blaine) took another step forward today because this is a tough place to play against that team and this environment,” Jaguars coach Mike Mularkey said. “He made some good throws to give us a chance to win all the way to the end.”

Injury update: Jaguars RG Uche Nwaneri hurt his left leg in the first half and was assisted off the field.

Going forward: Vikings -- Minnesota travels to Indianapolis to take on the Colts on Sept. 17. After winning what some called a must-win game at home, the schedule gets much tougher the following two weeks. . . . Jaguars -- Jacksonville will host a very tough Houston Texans team next Sunday, Sept. 17. After losing this close ballgame, the rebuilding Jaguars will have to play even better to avoid going down to 0-2.

For more Vikings news and notes, follow Joe Oberle on Twitter @CBSVikings and @joeoberle.