Adrian Peterson thinks NFL teams should value RBs as much as QBs
Adrian Peterson is among very few running backs in NFL history who have been able to play at a high level well into their 30s, but the seven-time Pro Bowler believes teams need to start treating his position with more respect.
In a recent interview with TMZ, Peterson expressed frustration over the fact that running backs have such a tough time landing massive guaranteed contracts like other skill position players. He called it “disrespectful,” pointing to himself and Frank Gore as proof that teams should feel more comfortable making long term commitments to running backs. In fact, Peterson feels running backs should be compensated more similarly to quarterbacks.
“I think the change is going to come,” he said. “Me and Frank Gore continue to show guys, ‘Hey, we are valuable. We can have 10, 14-year careers as well, so value us as well like you would value a quarterback, you know?'”
Some big contracts have been handed out recently to running backs. Christian McCaffrey signed a four-year, $64 million deal with the Carolina Panthers that included $38 million guaranteed. Ezekiel Elliott got a six-year, $90 million contract from the Dallas Cowboys with $50 million guaranteed. Dalvin Cook may not get quite that much, but the Minnesota Vikings star is looking for similar money.
Peterson is happy to see young backs representing the position well and cashing in.
“This young core of backs are really changing the game for the better,” Peterson said. “I feel like you’re going to continue to get guys like that, that’s going to help raise the value of the running back position.”
As for Peterson, he’s 35 and recently indicated he has no intention of retiring soon. Still, he and Gore are extremely rare in the sense that most running backs fizzle out after they turn 30. The same is not true for quarterbacks, which is one of the many reasons there’s such a massive difference in salaries at the two positions. That is not going to change.