Peterson On The Move?
It appears Adrian may not be rushing back to Minnesota. If not, where should he go?
Fresh off of being removed from the NFL’s exempt list Friday after Judge David Doty ordered the NFL to drop the suspension, Adrian Peterson is now allowed to speak to the Vikings management and coaches, but it appears that he has no interest in doing so.
According to numerous reports from Peterson’s camp the Vikings running back has no intention of playing for the team ever again. Peterson himself already told ESPN a while back that he felt “uneasy” about returning to play for the Vikings. GM Rick Spielman was unwilling to comment if there was a rift between Peterson and the organization, stating “I’ll just say it’s beneficial that we’re able to talk to him.” No question there’s tension between the two parties and it doesn’t appear like they’ll be fixing this broken relationship.
So let’s say Peterson is done with Minnesota, he is still one of if not the best back in the NFL. Where will Peterson’s next destination be? Everyone and their brother believe he’ll be a Cowboy because of his roots. He was born and raised in Texas, grew up rooting for the Cowboys and not to mention ESPN’s Outside The Lines reported this past summer that owner Jerry Jones and Peterson talked on the phone where Peterson expressed his desire to play for the Cowboys at the end of his tenure with Minnesota.
Jones told Adrian he’d also love for him to come to Dallas and play for him, but it’s all talk as of now. There’s no deal in place, nor have the two teams talked about a potential trade, and according to multiple sources to make a deal it would have to be a “Herschel Walker type” trade.
Dallas also must deal with the tough decision of either letting DeMarco Murray walk or not after using their franchise tag on Dez Bryant. If I’m Dallas I re-sign Murray without having to risk giving up a ton of draft picks for an aging running back who may or not be on the decline. I take my chances on the younger Murray who’s shown he’s as elusive and as explosive as any other running back in the league. Plus Dallas’s tight cap may halt any possible deal for Peterson whose owed $12.75 million next season.
So if Dallas is a no go what other places could be a fit for Peterson? Off the top of my head I would say Colts, Raiders, Atlanta, and Arizona. Out of all those teams I think the Colts would be the perfect fit for A.P. I understand they might be hesitant to make a deal seeing as how the last running back they traded for kind of….well….let us be nice and say backfired. They gave up a first round pick in last years’ draft for Trent Richardson who just couldn’t muster anything. However this may come to a surprise to some people but Adrian Peterson IS NOT Trent Richardson, nor will he ever be that big of a bust.
The Colts like Dallas do not have that much cap space but they do have a little wiggle room where they could find themselves making a blockbuster deal for the disgruntled running back. Not to mention they’ve got one of the most vibrant owners who’s not afraid to make a big splash, which landing Peterson no doubt would be. If they can’t make a deal with the Colts, I think Arizona is about as desperate as any team in the league for a running back. Again along with the previous two teams I mentioned they don’t have that much cap space, but imagining AP in a Bruce Arians run offense would be really fun to watch.
Got to think after the success Arizona had last year with all their injuries they go out and make a move for a big time offensive weapon in the backfield. Fitzgerald, Floyd out wide with Peterson in the backfield and a healthy Carson Palmer under center would be an exciting thing to watch and would have Bruce Arians foaming at the mouth.
Lastly I believe if nothing can be figured out with the previous teams mentioned, I think Oakland will do something very “Oaklandy” and come to Minnesota with a ridiculous offer that’d be just too hard to turn down. Oakland has a crazy amount of cap space so his contract won’t be a problem, and let’s face it they haven’t had a face of the franchise or dynamic offensive player since Tim Brown. They may have something in Derek Carr, so having a security blanket in Peterson would definitely help the young QB in his second year, not to mention Oakland will be big players in free agency so look for them to target guys like Randall Cobb and Jeremy Maclin. Things in Oakland could be looking up for the first time in a very long time.
So where do I believe he should go? As fun as it would be to see that dynamic high-powered offense in Dallas, which any real football fan would love to watch, I’d have to say his best destination would be Indianapolis with one of the best young arms in the game in Andrew Luck. Peterson would get to stay on turf where he’s made a living off of in Minnesota and they’d be an instant Super Bowl title contender. If Colts owner Jim Irsay can do it, he needs to not have “Trent Richardson Syndrome” and try to bring in one of the most dominant running backs this league has ever seen.