It would appear that even when he does nothing, Adrian Peterson makes news.
Anyone who was surfing their favorite sports websites over the holiday weekend saw the tidbit that Peterson isn’t expected to attend organized team activities this week.
The Peterson saga is a story that simply won’t die. In terms of his future with the Minnesota Vikings, this story has become its own Rasputin. It’s been going on since prior to the end of last season when Peterson said he felt betrayed by the organization not having his back. His wife hammered home the point by saying that she and Adrian would like to get a fresh start somewhere else.
The Vikings have maintained a stoic, near-silent front, shooting down the numerous Peterson-related questions by sticking to the company line that he is under contract and they expect him to honor his contract.
Last weekend, as the story that Peterson wouldn’t be attending OTAs developed, the rumor police were quick to point out that it is yet another sign that Peterson is renewing his demand to be traded – all the while ignoring the fact that A.P. hasn’t taken part in OTAs in years. When you’re bringing down the kind of money Peterson is, apparently a $250,000 bonus to lightly work out for a couple of weeks doesn’t seem necessary.
But, in the current climate, everyone is jumping on the story. Along the way, sites with no access to their own information have resurrected rumors of a potential trade to the Cowboys.
Is there a behind-the-scenes conspiracy going on? Did Peterson’s agent, Ben Dogra, need to put himself out in front of the story by badmouthing the Vikings and making claims that the best way to get Peterson to come back would be to either pay him more than his current record-setting running back deal or have more of it guaranteed? Was it necessary for Jerry Jones to mention on his radio show – without being asked – that he would be willing to trade the Cowboys’ 2016 first-round pick a week after the 2015 draft?
The rumor mill has been working overtime when it has come to Peterson. A daily Google search of Peterson has not seen a day go by for the last five months without some “NFL Rumors” header somehow finding a way for Peterson to end up in Dallas or, to a lesser extent, Arizona. It simply won’t go away.
The simple truth of the matter is that the Vikings have done nothing to indicate they’re going to trade Peterson. They had their chance in the week prior to the draft. They had their chance on the opening night of the draft. They never pulled the trigger. Some have contended parameters were quietly sent out – a first-round pick and two starting-caliber players – but there has never been a smoking gun to connect those particular dots. Yet, the rumors simply won’t go away.
The inconvenient truth is that Peterson has been a no-show at OTAs for much of his career.
In two months, if Peterson isn’t at training camp, then you have the beginning of a story. Considering the Vikings have five preseason games this year, that wouldn’t be a big surprise either because Adrian hasn’t had a preseason carry since prior to his devastating knee injury. The fact is that he isn’t needed at any of those functions. He typically uses training camp just to get himself in better football shape.
Once we get to training camp, if the impasse with Peterson remains, then we have a headline story. At the end of May? Not so much.
As much as we hate to invoke a Packer in this scenario, it’s time for Vikings fans to heed the admonition that Aaron Rodgers told twitchy Packers fans when Green Bay struggled out of the gate – R-E-L-A-X.
If nothing gets rectified between now and August, then you can start to panic. Until then, worrying does no good and doesn’t accomplish anything other than to get easily-rattled Vikings fans riled up for no reason.
Holler: Now Vikings fans need to relax
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