Notebook: Peterson won’t play in preseason

Vikings coach Mike Zimmer plans to sit Adrian Peterson for the rest of the preseason, which is fine with the star running back.

For the third consecutive preseason, Adrian Peterson won’t play.

Minnesota Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said Tuesday that he doesn’t plan to play Peterson again this preseason.

“I doubt it. Adrian and I have talked about it a little bit. I don’t really see the need,” Zimmer said. “We’re grabbing at the ball pretty good with him. We’re not tackling or anything. He’s doing a great job of the protections and the routes and all that, and obviously he runs really good. The only concern you have is that he might not have been hit enough, but our guys are grabbing at the ball a lot, punching at the ball when he’s running through there. And I talk to him about those things.”

Peterson said he doesn’t mind the approach and would leave the decision up to Zimmer.

“I pretty much feel comfortable. Got some good coaches surrounding me – Coach Kirb (Kirby Wilson) – he’s done a great job of teaching his room well,” Peterson said. “Of course, Coach (Norv) Turner is doing a great job out here. There’s a lot of periods where we’re just installing the plays. And then once you get into the season, everything is pretty much broke down into a certain amount of plays. With that, it’s easier to have your gameplan and know exactly what you’re doing.”

The Vikings are installing a new offense under Turner, but Peterson has been a participant in the Vikings’ full offseason program, going through organized team activities, minicamps and training camp.

“I think everything’s different,” Zimmer said. “Obviously there’s some runs that are the same, but there’s quite a few different runs from what he’s had in the past. But the timing of it, we’ve got plenty of work with that.”

In past years, Peterson has said he would lobby for playing time in the preseason, but that’s not the case this year as he learns to pace himself for the regular season.

“I try not to get too wired up, stay calm for the opener in St. Louis,” Peterson said. “But, yeah man, I’m ready to go each and every year for eight years. I’m ready to roll.”


  • Mike Zimmer said the potential suspension of Jerome Simpson won’t affect his practice plans, at least “not right now.”

    “Until I hear differently, I expect him to be here,” Zimmer said.

    Simpson continued to work with the first team in three-receiver sets on Tuesday.

  • Robert Blanton went through his second day of practice as he returns from a hamstring injury suffered in the fourth day of training camp.

    “I was trying to watch him quite a bit today and he looked like he was doing OK as far as being in the right place and moving around,” Zimmer said. “When I see the tape I’ll have a better idea, but he looked OK.”

  • With speculation about the future of Christian Ponder in Minnesota, Zimmer shot down the thinking that the Vikings might proceed with only two quarterbacks. Ponder didn’t throw any passes in full-team work on Monday and threw only one on Tuesday, an incompletion.

  • Zimmer said he hasn’t really thought about being able to put the Chris Kluwe allegations against special teams coordinator Mike Priefer behind the team. Kluwe and the Vikings reached a settlement for an anti-gay comment that Priefer made in the presence of the former punter.

    “I honestly have not thought about it very much,” Zimmer said. “I felt like Mike Priefer is a good person and a good coach and a good guy. That’s just how I felt the entire time. Whatever happened legally with the courts and all the other stuff, I’m just a football coach.”

  • DE Brian Robison returned to the practice field toward the end of the Tuesday’s practice but didn’t participate. He missed Monday and most of Tuesday to tend to a family matter, but Zimmer said he would play on Saturday.

  • CB Josh Robinson was in full pads Tuesday and went through the individual drills as he returns from a hamstring injury.

    “Overall, the health of the team is pretty good for the most part,” Zimmer said.

  • Matt Cassel threw the only interception during full-team work, a pass that went off the hands of WR Cordarrelle Patterson and into the diving arms of S Harrison Smith. Cassel was 12 for 20 in full-team work. Teddy Bridgewater, who got a little time with the first team, finished the day 15 of 18.

  • The offensive highlight was a 50-yard strike from Cassel to WR Greg Jennings on Cassel’s second pass in full-team work. Jennings also had a great adjustment to make a catch on a low throw from Bridgewater later in practice.

  • Bridgewater had a 59-yard touchdown pass to WR Rodney Smith, who also caught Bridgewater’s game-winning touchdown Saturday night.

  • The NFL announced that practice squad will increase from eight players to 10 for the 2014 and 2015 seasons. A player must have a minimum of six games – up from the current three games – on a practice squad in order for that season to count as one of the player’s three permissible seasons of practice squad service. Each team will be permitted to sign a maximum of two practice squad players who have earned no more than two accrued seasons of free agency credit. Absent this exception, a player who has earned one or more accrued seasons would not be eligible for a practice squad unless the player spent fewer than nine games on a club’s 46-player active list in each of his accrued seasons.

    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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