Adrian Peterson Attends Tuesday’s OTA with Vikings
After a nine-month ordeal stemming from Adrian Peterson’s child abuse charges, Peterson rejoined the Minnesota Vikings for OTA’s this morning. Peterson appeared in one game last season after he was deactivated by the Vikings after he was charged in Texas with child abuse for striking his son with a switch. He still received his full salary from the season however.
Since that moment, the Vikings relationship with Peterson began to fall apart as Peterson felt the organization did not provide him the support he felt he was deserving of and were too quick to distance themselves from him.
Peterson’s charges came soon after the video of Ray Rice striking his fiancée surfaced, and the NFL and its teams went into full damage control mode with matters of domestic abuse making anything but a hardline stance against Peterson a political nightmare for Minnesota.
After nine months, at least some of the conflict seems to be behind them.
Peterson stands to make $12.8 million if he plays, and nothing if he refused to play this season in hopes of being released or traded. Adrian Peterson is a 30-year old running back and 30-year-old running backs don’t have many seasons where they make $12.8 million, if they’re even lucky enough to be in the league. For example, Ray Rice is two years younger and still unsigned.
For the Vikings it became clear they were not going to get anything near Peterson’s market value in a trade so their decision was simple: play hard ball and see if he plays. If he chose to sit out, they would have saved $12.8 million, and if he did play they would have the best running back of the past ten years on their team again.
Now that Peterson is back, the Vikings look like a potential darkhorse team for the 2015 season. They return promising second year quarterback Teddy Bridgewater and one of the top offensive lines in the league and also brought in wide receiver Mike Wallace from the Miami Dolphins. If Peterson can reestablish his old form, the Minnesota Vikings could make some noise.
Peterson had the following to say on his return:
“I’m returning because I want to. I’m a part of this football team and I owe it to the guys I play with and to our coaches,” Peterson wrote Tuesday morning in an email to ESPN. “I was planning on coming in this week, and I’m looking forward to getting back on the field. It’s what I love to do.”