Peterson ‘not far off' from participating

Adrian Peterson continues to work out on his own and rehab after groin surgery in January, but he said it won't be long before he joins his teammates for workouts in Minnesota.

About 2½ months removed from surgery on his groin, Adrian Peterson said on Wednesday that he is "not far off" from being able to participate in the Minnesota Vikings' offseason program that started Monday.

"I can't really put a date on it, but I do look forward to participating. Right now, the most important thing is getting healthy and that's what I'm doing. I'm working out, rehabbing and working out and trying to get the body back square to where it needs to be," Peterson said during a conference call promoting Hyperice.

According to a release on the product, Hyperice "provides the benefits of cryotherapy and compression, enabling both the reduction of swelling and healing of tissues."

Peterson used the product following his ACL and MCL surgery in December 2011 and again this offseason to help in his recovery from his groin surgery. He is now a part owner in the company.

Peterson said he was hoping to avoid his latest surgery, but it became apparent to him late in the season, after trying to play through the injury he suffered on Nov. 3, that he would need surgery.

"I really didn't know what to think. I was hoping that I could get by and not have surgery. It happened Nov. 3 and originally it felt like maybe a strained groin and then gradually it continued to get worse," Peterson said. "Then at Baltimore, that's where I had the foot injury. I feel the foot injury was a reflection of the groin because I wasn't able to cut and be as elusive as I needed to be. But just being the competitor that I am, I just go out and try to get it done no matter what. I just felt like I was putting myself in too much of harm's way because I felt like didn't have the lateral movement and get outside the tackle box and get up-field fast enough to prevent different situations that could possibly put me in a bad predicament. But now I'm feeling good. I'm training hard.

"Icing and having compression on the knee, it was very vital as far as me getting my range of motion back, as far as me to take the swelling away, working those muscles and getting those muscles back firing," Peterson said. "When I tried it for the first time, I was amazed."

After his knee surgery in December 2011, Peterson rehabilitated and didn't miss a game in 2012, coming up just eight yards short of the NFL's single-season rushing record. He rushed for 2,097 yards in 2012.

Last year, he rushed for 1,266 yards and 10 touchdowns, but he missed two of the final three games because of groin and foot injuries and rushed only 18 times for 58 yards combined in the final two games he did play after suffering the injury.

He said reducing his carries isn't something he needs to do to keep performing at a high level.

"Not at all. Where I'm at now in my career, and even when I first came in … one thing I've learned, you've got to take care of the body. That's something that I've been doing," Peterson said, saying new products like Hyperice have helped promote faster recovery. "As far as putting in the hard work, that's what I'm going to do. I look on YouTube and I see guys that are 40 or 50 years old out running … 4.3s in the 40. It's all because they put the work in. As long as you have the mindset to work and then you have what you need to be able to take care of the body, then you're able to extend your span if you take care of the body. Hyperice has been a game-changer for me."

Despite his groin and foot injuries last year, he was named to the Pro Bowl, the sixth time in seven seasons with the Vikings he has earned that distinction, but he didn't participate in that all-star game because of the surgery.

"I can't sit here and say that I'm back right now," he said, "but I'm not far off at all."

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.

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