Adam Schefter reported on ESPN that Adrian Peterson and his legal team is currently in the middle of negotiations to reach a plea deal with Montgomery County, and they may be able to reach that deal as soon as Tuesday. While this case doesn’t have a lot of precedent, the presumption is that as soon as a plea deal is reached, Peterson will be removed from the exempt list and then suspended—with the further assumption that time spent exempt will not count towards a suspension (as he was paid during it and the NFLPA does not, as far as I know, have a provision for this).
Should that be the case, it is likely that he will face suspension from the league, not the team, as the team has less flexibility in regards to this decision (they can suspend for a maximum of four games and a player may not be suspended by a team and the NFL for the same offense as far as I know) and the NFL is very sensitive to how it will be handled.
For what it’s worth, the NFL does not need a conviction to suspend players. In this case, a plea deal will necessarily involve a guilty plea, but for a lesser charge. That may not matter to the NFL. The Vikings suspended Simpson for violating probation even though he never was actually charged for a DUI.
Given that the Vikings will be coming off of Week 8 and that Peterson may be suspended for anywhere between two games and the rest of the season, there remains the chance he could be on the roster by the end of the year and carrying the ball. For fantasy players willing to take a risk to boost an on-the-bubble roster, I would think picking him up would be a good idea—if the plea deal gets resolved, then the suspension may not be long enough to keep him out of fantasy playoffs in Weeks 14-16, depending on your league.
For now, we don’t know what caused the change in strategy for Peterson, whether it was his lawyer convincing him or seeing his negotiating position drop as rumors of a trade swirl.