The New Orleans Saints are down a running back, but that won’t spur them to action in the free agent market.
Coach Sean Payton said Saturday that the team wasn’t aiming to sign a veteran running back to replace the suspended Mark Ingram, but didn’t rule out a reunion with Adrian Peterson, who had a brief stint with the team in 2017.
Sean Payton confirms he is not looking to sign a veteran RB at this time. asked him if he would be open to bringing back Adrian Peterson. “Absolutely,” Payton said.
— Herbie Teope (@HerbieTeope) May 12, 2018
It doesn’t sound like the Saints are chasing a running back, but won’t object if the right option falls into their lap. Peterson’s tenure with New Orleans was somewhat tempestuous, though, so Payton may not be as eager to bring him back as he seems.
Adrian Peterson knows he could have a more difficult time finding a job this offseason than he did a year ago, and he may end up not finding one at all. If nothing else, the future Hall of Famer is going down swinging.
Peterson will turn 33 later this month and has suffered multiple significant knee injuries. Beyond that, he has always be seen as more of a power runner who isn’t as effective catching passes out of the backfield. Earlier in the week, Peterson thanked NFL legend Eric Dickerson for defending how much he has left in the tank. A.P. also fired back at critics who say he can’t catch.
Appreciate the love @EricDickerson. @RealSkipBayless @ShannonSharpe Nothing but respect! I’m not a receiving back??Okay… Tell me one of your Top free agent RB that has season with better numbers? Here’s two seasons, receiving 57-43 436yds 10.1 average/50-34 341 9.5 average. https://t.co/ddsCoYkxJN
— Adrian Peterson (@AdrianPeterson) March 13, 2018
When one person pointed out that Peterson was citing stats from years ago, the veteran running back did not back down.
That was 5 years ago.
— Charles L. Freeman (@charleslfreemn) March 13, 2018
Your point, sir? Now, My point in respondn to those guys now you were to clearly state, when put in the right situation, I was a productive receivin back and if compared to any point in time the targets, yards and productivity is relevant. These weren’t shovel passes!
— Adrian Peterson (@AdrianPeterson) March 13, 2018
So because you don’t believe& rather overlook clear evidence! Can you find a RB that runs with more force tenacity, determination and Heart? Send me a link 2 one RB that ran harder than I did in the 49ers game last year. I won’t say another word if you can do that! Don’t ME IN pic.twitter.com/4JD1VL0z3e
— Adrian Peterson (@AdrianPeterson) March 14, 2018
In the past, Peterson has blamed his lack of production in the receiving game on the quarterbacks he has played with. Even if that does help explain it, teams will probably be more turned off by his age and the fact that he has averaged just 2.8 yards per carry while playing sparingly over the past two seasons. Peterson simply isn’t the back he used to be.
Adrian Peterson will once again be looking for work this offseason after he was released by the Arizona Cardinals, and the veteran running back knows exactly which team he would sign with if he had his choice.
The Houston Texans.
Peterson grew up in Palestine, Texas, which is about a 2-3 hour drive from Houston. In an interview with TMZ this week, he hesitated when asked what his “dream scenario” would be for 2018 before admitting he has always thought about playing for the Texans.
“Obviously being back home would be awesome. It is what it is. It’s a long shot. They’ve got a good running back in (Lamar) Miller and a guy coming off an injury in (D’Onta) Foreman.
“Being back here at home where I work out every day. My family is here. My family is close. My mom is here. Being around her a little more during this time would be even more a cherry on top. … Houston has always been a team I’ve thought about.”
Peterson said he feels the Texans are in a position to contend both on defense and offense.
“The defense is incredible, obviously,” he said. “Good division to be in. Good young quarterback, receivers, (DeAndre) Hopkins. It’s a lot of talent there as well.”
Coming off a year in which he averaged just 3.5 yards per carry and saw his season end prematurely because of a neck injury, the soon-to-be 33-year-old Peterson will not be able to choose any destination he wants in free agency. He has made similar comments in the past about wanting to play for a specific team, but Peterson had trouble finding a team to sign him a year ago. It will be even tougher this offseason.
The new NFL league year begins on Wednesday, which means teams are preparing to reshape their roster. As they do so, they are releasing players, with Monday being a big day for releases. Players can be cut for a variety of reasons, though there are often financial motives behind such decisions. Whatever the case, talented veteran players are still showing up on the market as we work our way through March.
Here are the ten most notable players who have hit the market this month. Oh, and by the time you read this, Ndamukong Suh could be released, which would have put him at the top of the list.
1) Adrian Peterson, RB
Adrian Peterson will be on the free agent market for the second offseason in a row. He was released by the Arizona Cardinals on Monday after playing six games for them last season. Though Peterson only rushed for 529 yards on 156 carries (3.4 yards per carry average). He posted two big games for them, including a 134-yard, two touchdown performance against Tampa Bay, and a 159-yard game against the 49ers.
A neck injury ended Peterson’s season last year, but he says he has recovered. There is a chance he could return to the Cardinals despite his release.
The Arizona Cardinals are expected to release Adrian Peterson this week, but the veteran running back could apparently end up returning to the team.
According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Cardinals will release Peterson in order to avoid having to pay him the $750,000 bonus he is due on the third day of the league year. However, A.P. may sign a new deal with Arizona after that.
Cardinals expected to release RB Adrian Peterson today, per source. Peterson has a $750,000 bonus due on the third day of league year, Friday, so Arizona saves money. But Peterson still could return to Arizona later, per source.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 12, 2018
Peterson will turn 33 this month. He has said that he wants to play several more seasons, but the recent comments Cardinals GM Steve Keim made about him make it seem like Peterson will have to play elsewhere in 2018.
While he got off to a blazing start after being traded to the Cardinals from New Orleans, Peterson ended up averaging just 3.4 yards per carry in 2017. His season ended prematurely with a neck injury, though he was able to avoid surgery.
Adrian Peterson has said he wants to play in the NFL next season and beyond, but he will likely have even more trouble finding work this offseason than he did a year ago. The lukewarm endorsement he got from his soon-to-be former team’s general manager probably won’t help much.
While speaking with reporters at the NFL Scouting Combine on Wednesday, Arizona Cardinals general manager Steve Keim said he believes Peterson has plenty left in the tank. However, he was openly critical of the 32-year-old’s pass-catching ability.
“There’s no doubt that Adrian still has some juice left in the tank, particularly from a run-skill standpoint,” Keim said, via Chris Wesseling of NFL.com. “He still runs with a lot of anger and aggressiveness, and has the type of contact balance you look for in that position. But in today’s day and age, we all know that you have to be able to catch the ball out of the backfield, you have to be able to do a lot of different things. So versatility is really a key.”
Peterson, who will turn 33 in March, has never been known for having great hands. He tried to blame that on his quarterback situations in the past, but the numbers don’t lie. Over his 12-year NFL career, A.P. had just two seasons where he topped 300 yards receiving. The last time he hit that mark was in 2010.
While he got off to a blazing start after being traded to the Cardinals from New Orleans, Peterson ended up averaging just 3.4 yards per carry in 2017. There’s no question he can still turn it on when he needs to, but his prediction about how much longer he is going to play just seems too farfetched.
Here’s a look at the NFL’s 15 most overrated players of 2017:
15. Eli Manning, QB, New York Giants
After a dismal offensive season in 2016, many expected the Giants to erupt in 2017 and establish themselves as Super Bowl contenders. The belief was a strong defense would get them to the postseason and then two-time Super Bowl MVP Eli Manning would lead them the rest of the way. All of those expectations fell flat and the 37-year-old Manning even found himself benched — controversially — in favor of Geno Smith. Part of Manning’s struggles can undoubtedly be attributed to a terrible offense line and the lack of a ground game, but his Pro Football Focus grade of 75.5 speaks volumes about how far he’s fallen.
14. Joe Mixon, RB, Cincinnati Bengals