MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Adrian Peterson is currently under contract with the Minnesota Vikings, but it’s looking more and more likely his days in purple are coming to an end.
Peterson appeared on ESPN’s First Take Thursday morning, acknowledging that football is a business and that it’s unlikely he would return to the Vikings for $18 million. He said the teams he would have interest in going to if it doesn’t work out with the Vikings would be the Houston Texans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and New York Giants.
Peterson had a disappointing 2016 season marred by tearing the meniscus in his knee in Week 2 against the Packers, also the regular season debut for U.S. Bank Stadium. He returned from injured reserve in time to play in Week 15 against the Indianapolis Colts, a 34-6 loss. He managed just 22 yards on six carries.
Peterson did not play in the final two games against the Packers and Bears. He is due $18 million next season, but it’s highly unlikely the Vikings will pay him that money in the final year of his current contract. His options would be to renegotiate for a less expensive contract, or the Vikings would be forced to release him.
It’s the first time Peterson has expressed publicly where he might go if he didn’t stay in Minnesota. Without Peterson for much of the season, the Vikings had one of the worst rushing offense in the NFL.
Peterson is originally from the Houston area. The Texans currently have Lamar Miller and Alfred Blue as their top running backs. The Buccaneers feature Doug Martin and Jacquizz Rogers, and the Giants have Rashad Jennings and Paul Perkins.