Adrian Peterson is the best back in the NFL. He maybe one of the greatest backs in the history of football when he finishes his career. At the age of 28 Peterson has over 9,500 yards rushing, 85 touchdowns, and a league MVP. However, should Peterson remain a Viking? Or will we witness another early exit reminiscent of Jim Brown or Barry Sanders? Despite being the best back in the league, the Vikings well aren’t exactly one of the best teams. In truth they are one of the worst. In a division loaded with young and talented teams, the Vikings have been left behind. Despite three first round picks in last year’s draft, the roster lacks talent especially at the most important position, quarterback. While most football fans might just assume that Peterson will spend his entire career with the Vikings, I’m not sold.
If NFL history has taught use anything there could be two other scenarios that could happen Peterson’s career. The first is the Herschel Walker trade. The Cowboys traded Herschel Walker to the Vikings for a boatload of draft picks that Dallas used to build its dynasty in the early nineties. Why don’t the Vikings do the opposite this time? With Peterson in the prime of his career and reaching the age of thirty, the Vikings may decide that if they can get a good amount of draft picks back for Peterson that it maybe the best course of action. Obviously it will hard to tell fans that you’re trading the best back in the NFL, but with the value of draft picks Peterson could fetch in return for his services may eventually win Vikings fans over. If the Vikings could find their franchise quarterback while adding some extra playmakers, the Vikings could be a team with a very bright future. Plus, it’s better to sell high with running backs. Just look at the Jacksonville Jaguars. Two years ago they could have restocked their team with draft picks for Maurice Jones-Drew. Now with his injuries and lack of production the Jags would be lucky to get any draft pick for their once prized running back.
If the Vikings sit on their prized running back there is another possible scenario that
could happen. I’m saying possible, not likely. With that being said, could Peterson be the next great running back who retires in their prime? It’s happened before, just look no further than the two greatest running backs in history. Jim Brown and Barry Sanders both retired in the prime of their careers out of nowhere. However, Peterson most closely resembles Sanders path. Early playoff success followed by years of losing. Not convinced? How about two franchises that failed to find a franchise quarterback for their star running back and were losing season after season. With the Vikings currently fading fast in 2013, the question should be can Peterson keep the same fire? It’s hard when your losing. Peterson is risking is body, neck, and mind for an organization that is putting out nowhere near the same amount of effort that he is. If the Vikings continue to flounder year after year, and with no change of scenery in sight, number 28 will decide he’s had enough. If the records are important to him, which be all indications they are, Peterson will probably keep playing. However, if he really wants to win a Super Bowl maybe Peterson will decide that it’s not worth it to keep playing in Minnesota. Last year Peterson single-handedly carried this team to the playoffs, but only as a low wild card seed which concluded with a one and done in the playoffs. Now Peterson is still having a phenomenal year, it’s just the rest of the Vikings who can’t get out of their own way. As we continue to watch one of the greatest backs in history continue his great work, don’t let these two scenarios fade from your mind. They may not be as far-fetched as you think. Do you think Peterson would have to leave Minnesota to win a championship? Will he eventually be traded? Could you see him leaving football early? Don’t forget to comment.