Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson isn't sure whether he'll take any contact during practices this week, but either way he says "I'll be ready to roll" whenever the coaching and medical staffs allow him to play his first game since tearing the anterior cruciate and medial collateral ligaments in his left knee Dec. 24.
Peterson started practicing on a limited basis last Sunday at the Vikings' training camp in Mankato, Minn., then was allowed to participate in all the drills last Tuesday. However, head coach Leslie Frazier instructed the defense not to touch Peterson.
This week, Peterson, Frazier and others will talk about his progress Monday before deciding how to proceed with his practice regimen the rest of the week and determine if he will play in the team's third preseason game Friday night against the San Diego Chargers.
Peterson said there was no soreness in his return to practice last week after spending the first two weeks of training camp in Mankato toiling through intense cardio and strength workouts on a side field under the direction of strength and conditioning coach Tom Kanavy and head athletic trainer Eric Sugarman.
"The first couple days I worked out, if you seen me on the side I was working out harder than that, than getting in there taking 12 snaps (in his second practice)," Peterson said. "There's no soreness."
"(The knee) felt good. I feel like I'm getting better, getting out here and actually getting some work done. I'm improving every day."
While Peterson wanted to start taking and delivering hits upon his return to full practice last week, he still isn't sure if that will happen this week.
"I wouldn't mind. To be honest with you, it really wouldn't matter either way. I feel like I'll be ready to roll," he said.
Frazier said the Vikings would gradually increase Peterson's workload in practice this week after essentially splitting time between him and Toby Gerhart with the first-team offense in practices last week.
"We're going to give him a little bit more each day, see how he responds, and continue to determine what's the next step. Just go day to day," Frazier said. "We have some ideas on how we want to approach it, but a lot of it depends on how he feels with some of the things we're going to give him this week."
While Frazier and Peterson will talk Monday, the head coach said a determination about Peterson's playing status for Friday, when starters get the most action they see all preseason, would be made either Tuesday or Wednesday.
In the meantime, Toby Gerhart will continue to fill in if Peterson isn't available Friday. Gerhart has 61 yards on 11 rushes (5.5-yard average) so far this preseason.
"He looked real good," Peterson said. "He stepped in there and did what he was called to do."
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: ‘I'll be ready to roll' when needed
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