By Brad Crainer
Whether you agree with his methods of rearing children or not, everyone must agree that Adrian Peterson is the Greek god of rushing. Unfortunately, he is also acting like the Greek god of whining about his contract and wanting a trade. So where is Peterson in terms of fantasy football value for the coming season?
Undoubtedly, AP is an unprecedented talent. However, he’s also reached 30 years of age, which typically results in a sudden and frightening decline in productivity. This, coupled with a year of suspension, makes Adrian Peterson a very tenuous gamble for your fantasy future.
In 2012, Peterson, aged 27, reached an insane 2097 rushing yards, while only compiling 12 rushing touchdowns through 16 games. This bottomed out in 2013, when Peterson rushed for a measly 1266 rushing yards, the lowest output of his career with at least 14 games played. This decline could be attributed to age, changes in the offensive line, or changes in coaching philosophy. One thing is certain, though. Adrian Peterson is on the decline.
Perhaps a year off will have rejuvenated the oft-used ball carrier, but it is more likely that the days of Peterson completely taking over a game and breaking out on 80-yard runs have passed us by. Matt Asiata and company should be able to expect a fair number of snaps behind Peterson.
When it’s all said and done, the Vikings are likely going to play the game of Running Back by Committee, and if you’re in a small league there are much better options for RB1 than Adrian Peterson.
Fantasy Football Projection: Adrian Peterson RB2, <1000 yards rushing, 8 rushing TD