D.J. Wonnum had one of five sacks of Panthers quarterback Bryce Young on Sunday.

— Carlos Gonzalez, Star Tribune

Five Extra Points: Great match-up for defense, Kirk Cousins survives and more Cam Akers

After the Vikings' blitzes couldn't faze Justin Herbert last week, Carolina rookie Bryce Young fell in the face of pressure from Brian Flores' defense.

Harrison Smith, always a beast, leads the way to victory for Vikings

Harrison Smith (22) of the Minnesota Vikings pass rushes against Chuba Hubbard (30) in the second quarter.

— Grant Halverson, Tribune News Service

Vikings safety Harrison Smith is being used differently by Brian Flores than he was last season and made big plays when his team needed him Sunday.

Gallery: Vikings beat Carolina for first victory

The Vikings survived a massive first-quarter blunder to beat the Panthers.

Three keys to the Vikings' 21-13 win over the Carolina Panthers

Vikings outside linebacker D.J. Wonnum (98) returns a fumble forced by safety Harrison Smith for a touchdown in the third quarter against the Panthers.

— Carlos Gonzalez, Star Tribune

Vikings safety Harrison Smith had three sacks in the second half, one of which led to the game-winning points.

Marcus Davenport, Cam Akers enter lineup, boosting Vikings vs. Panthers

Running back Cam Akers, right, acquired by the Vikings on Sept. 20, made his debut for the team agains the Panthers.

— Carlos Gonzalez, Star Tribune

Edge rusher Marcus Davenport had four tackles and a third-down sack while running back Cam Akers finished with 51 yards on seven touches in his Vikings debut.

Panthers' Adam Thielen frustrated by loss to Vikings. Did he bring a grudge to the game?

Panthers wide receiver Adam Thielen hugged safety and former teammate Harrison Smith following the Vikings’ 21-13 victory in Charlotte, N.C., on Sunday.

— Brian Westerholt, Associated Press

Former Vikings star wide receiver Adam Thielen caught seven passes for 76 yards, but the Panthers dropped to 0-4 for the season.

Vikings beat Panthers 21-13 boosted by Harrison Smith's sacks, fumble recovery for touchdown

The Vikings finally got their first victory of the season — sparked by two Justin Jefferson touchdowns and a strip-sack by Harrison Smith that turned into a touchdown for D.J. Wonnum.