Adrian Peterson speculates
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson has been in the NFL for nearly 10 years now. He still doesn’t know what is appropriate to say to the media.

The three-time rushing champion appeared on ESPN’s First Take on Thursday and wasn’t afraid to share how he really feels about his contract and future playing days.

Here are a few highlights from Peterson’s segment.

  • He still believes he has five “strong” more years left. Or, as Max Kellerman put it, not “some approximation of Adrian Peterson.” Reminder: Peterson rushed for 72 yards on 37 carries (1.9 yards per carry) this season.
  • He believes he’s “earned” his impending $18 million salary for the 2017 season. Reminder (again): Peterson rushed for 72 yards on 37 carries (1.9 yards per carry) this season.
  • His number one priority is still winning a championship.
  • He specifically mentioned three teams that he’s thought of joining — the New York Giants, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and Houston Texans.
  • His criteria for a prospective, hypothetical team includes a good defense, a good offensive scheme, and a great coaching staff in need of a running back.

There are two positives to take away from Peterson’s segment on First Take. First, the man is oozing with confidence. It’s probably too much confidence, but I hope to be that confident about anything in my life someday.

The second positive aspect was Peterson’s admission that his number one priority is to win a championship. In that aspect, he has the right mentality for a 30-year-old running back.

The rest of the segment is hardly beneficial to Peterson’s dealings with the Vikings. His smirks and assured remarks regarding his $18 million salary aren’t a good look; especially given how the value of a running back like Peterson has declined so drastically the past few years.

It’s also a tad ironic how Peterson’s “perfect-world” scenario fits the identity of the Vikings. Good defense? Check. Great coaching staff? Check. In need of a running back? Check. Good offensive scheme? Maybe. There aren’t a ton of teams in the NFL that will go 3.5-for-4 in that scenario.

Peterson’s specific mention of the Giants, Texans, and Buccaneers also raises red flags heading into the offseason. I’ll give him a pass on the Giants because the First Take crew offered a bit of peer pressure there. But he absolutely did not have to go out of his way to mention Tampa Bay and Houston as well.

This segment is good news for those members of the Purple and Gold faithful that have clamored for Peterson’s departure. His comments certainly didn’t improve his chances of strengthening relationships with the front office and remaining in Minnesota for 2017.

It’s remarkable how Peterson’s dealt with the media as a high-profile figure for a decade now and still has no grasp of what is appropriate to say on record.

As for me, I’m very appreciative of what Peterson has done for the Vikings since he was drafted in 2007, but it’s time to part ways. If he wants to depart by self-destructing, I guess that’s fine by me.