Minnesota’s Adrian Peterson – arguably the best running back in the NFL – said he has “somewhat” of a gut feeling that he will be in uniform on Sunday when the Vikings open their season against Jacksonville.
This would be somewhat of an accomplishment considering Peterson wrecked his left knee nine months ago, having two ligaments repaired on December 31.
Still, Peterson knows he’s an invaluable commodity that the Vikings will handle with the utmost care. So, being in uniform for the opener does not mean he will play.
”I’m below; I got coach (Leslie) Frazier, then I’ve got the owner, there’s a lot of people that’s really calling the shots,” Peterson said. ”So, only thing I can do is control my part. I’ve been doing that this week. . . And before the game, I’m going to go out there and see what I can do and hopefully I will get the nod. I want to play, obviously.”
Frazier has said Peterson’s participation won’t be determined until right before the game, but said a decision would likely come after watching Peterson in practice Thursday and Friday. He said there was nothing the back could probably show the team on Sunday to change any previous declarations.
”I think we’d know Saturday where things are,” Frazier said. ”I don’t think we’d work him out pregame to see if he’s ready to play. We’ll have a good idea after we get through with Friday where he stands.”
Frazier has pushed a cautious approach, insisting this week that if Peterson does play against the Jaguars his workload will be limited. Offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave said the team has determined an appropriate number of carries for Peterson in the opener if he suits up.
Peterson said it would be difficult to accept being inactive for Sunday’s game.
”It will be a hard pill to swallow,” Peterson said. ”So, hopefully that’s not the case.”