Adrian Peterson watched from the bench Sunday as Toby Gerhart punched in the Vikings’ final touchdown to put a ribbon on their stunning upset win over the Houston Texans. It wasn’t just that Adrian was gassed from a grueling day of running against a very physical Houston defense. He was suffering from a bit of an abdominal injury. He’d been listed with that for a couple weeks now on the injury report but that was the first time it seemed to really affect his performance. Peterson ended up with “just” 86 yards in the game, leaving him 102 shy of 2,000 with one week to go.
Houston did a good job on Peterson but the injury also seemed to slow him up a little. He looked like a tired, beat-up guy by the time Gerhart stepped in. So does this mean we should be worried about his ability to carry the load next week vs. Green Bay? Don’t bank on it. This isn’t just for 2,000 yards and maybe a shot at Eric Dickerson’s record (though that is a very long shot right now). This is for the playoffs.
If the Vikes had nothing on the line maybe Adrian would sit. But it’s all on the line and Adrian will play. In fact, according to Adrian, he’s not even injured. On KFAN Monday morning he referred to his abdominal issues as “irritation.” That’s just Adrian being Adrian. He was probably in tremendous pain out there. But in his mind he’s suffering a little irritation. Is there any doubt he’ll be primed and ready to run over the Packers and lead the Vikes to the playoffs?
There’s no doubt.
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