Well folks, ol’ number 28 is at it again. Yes indeed, the currently unemployed Adrian Peterson has made another social media post attempting to explain his position and, this time, his desires in free agency. This one took the form of a Twitter picture, of what appears like an Instagram caption, even though the statement doesn’t seem to be live on Instagram. I’m confused as well.
— Adrian Peterson (@AdrianPeterson) March 25, 2017
It’s hard to fault Peterson for trying to tell his side of the story; there has been a lot reported about him this offseason, and anonymous sources often turn out to be inaccurate. And it’s nice to have, as he put it, some information “Straight from the horse’s mouth.” According to Adrian, his main objective is finding a good fit with a team that can content for a Super Bowl. He also says he’s in no rush to commit, which is either a valid explanation for why he hasn’t signed a contract yet, or posturing, as other, lower-profile running backs get scooped up and Peterson remains without a team.
Earlier this week, ESPN reported Peterson is asking for more than $8 million in the first year of a new contract. Considering his age (32), trouble staying on the field recently, and diminished skill set in today’s passing NFL, the report caused widespread scoffing among fans and media. No running back has signed a deal approaching that number this offseason, and AP’s days as a bell-cow back are almost certainly behind him.
Adrian seems to be disputing this report in his Twitter post. The key phrase:
“How prideful is it for me to put out…I won’t play for anything less than 8 million!”
This can be read a few different ways, but I’m guessing he’s trying to say that asking for $8 million would be arrogant (correct), and so the report is untrue. I think Vikings fans would have a tough time buying that logic, because many of the things Peterson has done during his time in Minnesota (see: Camels, et al) would fall far from the side of humble. But, with these anonymous reports, it’s tough to know who actually said what, so it wouldn’t surprise me at all if Adrian himself never actually requested that amount.
As free agency rolls along and Peterson is still without a team, it’s a good be the market for his services is quite a bit softer than he expected. Backs like Eddie Lacy, Latavius Murray, and Shaun Draughn have already been signed for RB-needy teams, and the available running back jobs are quickly disappearing. Rick Spielman has confirmed Peterson’s time in Minnesota is indeed over. ESPN’s Ben Goessling reports the Packers have some interest in meeting with Peterson, but it might not happen until after the draft, if at all. The Raiders are still a potential landing spot if the Marshawn Lynch comeback ends up not materializing.
It will be interesting to see where Adrian Peterson ultimately ends up, and at what price. It seems unlikely he’s done with football, and his Twitter post would confirm that line of thinking, for now. We’ll keep an eye on the socials for more updates.