Adrian Peterson arrived at Minnesota Vikings training camp Thursday saying his surgically repaired left knee was "full go," but the coaching and training staff had yet to determine his status for The Opening practice on Friday.
"To be honest I'm full go. I'm pretty much doing everything – cutting, running, jumping," Peterson said. "It's kind of different when you put pads on and you've got guys diving at your legs, making these sudden cuts based off instincts, the instincts of the game. So that aspect I really haven't had a lot to practice with. So that's really what I want, to get a feel and get out there and get involved in that."
Whether he is on the practice field with teammates or a side field working on rehabilitating his knee during the first day of training camp practices Friday, Peterson – to the surprise of no one – says he will be going hard.
Indications are that Peterson would start camp on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list. During camp, he can come off that list at any point and begin practicing, but the Vikings and Peterson have stressed throughout his seventh-month-long recovery that the main goal is getting him back for the team's regular-season opener Sept. 9 against Jacksonville.
Peterson had surgery to repair his torn anterior cruciate and lateral collateral ligaments in his left knee Dec. 30. He tore the ligaments on Dec. 24 against the Washington Redskins and was placed on season-ending injured reserve for the final game of the 2011 season.
"I'm going to lobby to get out there and try to be involved some. To what extent? I don't know. We'll discuss that later," Peterson said after checking into training camp at Minnesota State, Mankato Thursday afternoon. "But I feel like I can participate a little bit."
Players were scheduled to take physicals Thursday evening and that would help determine Peterson's status on Friday.
"Later this evening we'll talk about what the plan will be for him," Vikings coach Leslie Frazier said. "We just want to be able to get a better feel for where he is physically after I talk with our trainers and our doctors after they take a look at him today and then we'll talk about what the best plan is for him."
Peterson acknowledged that the PUP list was a possibility but said he was "going to try to fight against it so I can get out there and be involved."
He started running on dry land at the end of March and showed off his rehabilitative progress in front of the media in May when he shuffled briskly back and forth, sprinted around a hula hoop, ran wind sprints and did plyometric work, jumping repeatedly on top of a stack of boxes about 3½ feet high. Later that month, he began to cut to simulate football movements, but the knee still hasn't taken on contact like it will once he begins practicing.
Despite missing three games with an ankle injury and the season finale with his knee injury, Peterson rushed for 970 yards and 12 touchdowns.
Peterson signed a seven-year contract extension that could be worth as much as $100 million, including $36 million in guarantees, the day before the 2011 season opener.
Tim Yotter is the publisher of Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Viking Update web site or magazine, click here.
Peterson ‘full go,' but PUP a possibility
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