Fantasy Football: Should You Treat Adrian Peterson Like He Didn't Get Injured?

Ryan Lester@LestersLegendsSenior Writer IJune 4, 2012

LANDOVER, MD - DECEMBER 24: Running back Adrian Peterson #28 of the Minnesota Vikings rushes for yards against the Washington Redskins in the second quarter at FedEx Field on December 24, 2011 in Landover, Maryland. The Minnesota Vikings won, 33-26. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Patrick Smith/Getty Images

Adrian Peterson is a freak of nature. He’s 6’1″ and 217 pounds of pure muscle. He’s as fast as he is powerful. All Day has reached double-digits in touchdowns every season since entering the league, and he would have likely ran for 1,200 yards if his season hadn’t been marred with injuries.

When he suffered a devastating knee injury in Week 16 of the 2011 NFL season, there was every reason to be concerned that he would be severely limited in 2012. Obviously, he’s a physical specimen, but he still needs time to heal. Or does he?

Peterson seems to be light years ahead of schedule. He has been beating teammates in foot races, which is impressive enough. However, during the OTAs, AP beat Percy Harvin in sprints up a hill. Harvin is one of the faster players in the league, and All Day is already beating him in races half-a-year removed from his surgery.

The real tests will come when he starts cutting and getting hit. That will not only test Peterson’s knee’s ability to hold up, but it will also test Peterson’s confidence in it. That mental aspect is perhaps equally important in his recovery. Peterson brims with confidence though, so I don’t expect it to be an issue.

Based on his recovery, I have moved Peterson up in my running back rankings (see link below). Sure, he comes with a risk, but every RB comes with a risk (see Jamaal Charles and Matt Forte last year). If anybody is going to beat the odds, All Day is as good a bet as there is.

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