One of the major off-field headlines that haunted the NFL last year, was the child abuse case brought up against Minnesota Vikings’ running back, Adrian Peterson. Peterson was the second premier running back in the league to earn a year-long suspension last season, after Ray Rice was suspended for his case regarding spousal abuse.
Peterson’s suspension is due to expire in the next week and a half, so he met the commissioner in New York City to discuss the terms in which he will be reinstated. This is the first time that Peterson has met with Roger Goodell regarding this situation. He is ready to move on from this issue and offered this statement regarding the situation, “I am anxious to start a new chapter and get on with the rest of my life”.
After his charges were reduced from a felony to a misdemeanor, Goodell chose to suspend Peterson for the remainder of the NFL season. Once he received this extended suspension, Peterson attempted to appeal the ruling, but the arbitrator denied his appeal. The NFL Players’ Association then appealed that denial, and the whole cycle restarted. The fact of the matter was that Peterson had zero chance of playing last season.
Once Peterson is reinstated, it will be an interesting scenario for the NFL. Peterson’s agent, Ben Dogra, announced a few months ago that he has no desire of continuing to play for the Minnesota Vikings. The Vikings did the opposite of what the Baltimore Ravens did with Ray Rice, and did not release him from his contract when all of the legal troubles started to go down.
The Minnesota Vikings front office and coaching staff understand the type of player Peterson can still be. He came back from ACL surgery and won the MVP the next season while falling only a few yards short of breaking the single-season rushing record. There’s no doubt this guy can bounce back from a season off and have an enormous impact on whatever team he is on.
There have been rumors for a while that Jerry Jones and the Dallas Cowboys might attempt to make a play at getting Peterson to be their stud running back, after losing superstar Demarco Murray. Their signing of ex-Raider Darren Mcfadden, seemed to cancel this prospect out, but Peterson has expressed that he would like to play in Dallas. The Cowboys could clear enough cap space to pay Peterson the $13 million he would be getting, but they would have to ask veteran tight end, Jason Witten to restructure his contract as well as make a few other roster moves.
The probability of Peterson ending up in Dallas this season seem to be pretty low. Although he has no desire to remain a Minnesota Viking, it’s hard to imagine the Vikings letting their franchise player go unless they can get a great deal for him. The next step for Peterson is to earn his reinstatement and then we can watch the whole saga play out.