Adrian Peterson Injury: Latest on RB's Week 1 Status, Toby Gerhart's Reps & More

Patrick Clarke@@_Pat_ClarkeCorrespondent IAugust 30, 2012

The Minnesota Vikings are hoping that superstar running back Adrian Peterson will be able to contribute in their regular season opener against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sept. 9, but they prepared for life without him nonetheless.

Peterson went down in Week 16 last season with a brutal knee injury after tearing both his MCL and ACL against the Washington Redskins.

UPDATE: Sunday, September 9 at 11:38 a.m. ET by Patrick Clarke

Adrian Peterson will start at running back for the Minnesota Vikings against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday, according to the Vikings' official Twitter account:

He’s back!Adrian Peterson is active AND will start today for the #Vikings

— Minnesota Vikings (@VikingsFootball) September 9, 2012

------End of Update------

UPDATE: Sunday, September 9 at 11:08 a.m. ET by Patrick Clarke

Adrian Peterson will play on Sunday against the Jacksonville Jaguars, but will split carries with backup RB Toby Gerhart, according to NFL reporter Jason Cole via Twitter:

Just told that APeterson will definitely play, no big surprise. But will share carries with Gerhart.

— Jason Cole (@JasonColeYahoo) September 9, 2012

-----End of Update-----

UPDATE: Saturday, September 8 at 9:45 a.m. ET by Tyler Conway

There is "no way" Adrian Peterson does not play on Sunday, according to a source that spoke with ProFootballTalk's Mike Florio on Saturday.


Vikings running back Adrian Peterson will play on Sunday against the Jaguars. A source with knowledge of the situation say there’s “no way” Peterson won’t. 

Florio also reports that Toby Gerhart will still split the carries on Sunday with Peterson. It's obvious that the Vikings are unwilling to rush their star running back along and will tread lightly early in the season.

Gerhart has proven himself as a viable back, and seemed on the brink of a breakout year throughout the preseason.

Either way, this will give the Vikings a fantastic top two at running back going forward so long as both stay healthy.

-----End of Update-----

UPDATE: Friday, September 7 at 2:35 p.m. ET

Adrian Peterson is listed as questionable for the Vikings, according to Florida Times-Union's Ryan O'Halloran.

No surprise -- #Vikings list RB Adrian Peterson as questionable and limited practice. #jaguars

— Ryan O'Halloran (@ryanohalloran) September 7, 2012

---END of UPDATE---

UPDATE: Thursday, September 6 at 5:20 p.m. ET by Tim Keeney

Adrian Peterson is ready to play some football (via ESPN's Kevin Seifert):

"I'm ready to play," Peterson told reporters. "If that's 10 snaps or five or 25 or 30, I'm ready to roll. That's my mindset and how I feel about it. So I'm going to keep my mindset pointed in that direction." 

It's still unknown whether or not head coach Leslie Frazier is willing to loosen the reins on Peterson, who is just about eight months removed from ACL surgery, but one thing is very clear:

All Day is ready to go.

Still, despite the fact that this guy is an absolute machine—most players would still be in the physical therapist's office at this point—expect to see more Toby Gerhart than Adrian Peterson on Sunday afternoon. 

------End of Update------

UPDATE: Thursday, September 6 at 1 p.m. ET by Timothy Rapp

We still don't know whether or not Adrian Peterson will play in Week 1, or how many touches he will play if he sees game action. What we do know is that while Peterson very badly wants to get in the game, it won't be his call.

From Tom Pelissero of ESPN:

Adrian Peterson makes clear in weekly session with reporters he wants to play Sunday but repeatedly defers to #Vikings on decision.

— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) September 6, 2012

Fantasy owners and Vikings fans should temper their expectations in Week 1, that much is certain. Peterson is likely to play a very limited role even if he plays.

----------END OF UPDATE----------

Vikings head coach Leslie Frazier told the Star-Tribune's Kent Youngblood that Peterson saw contact in practice for the first time on Monday:

"Today is another step in the process. We told our defense to hit him a little bit, see how he responded, I told [running backs coach] James Saxon to tell them they will be contacting [Peterson] today."

Peterson hasn't played at all this preseason and will not play in the finale against Houston, according to Youngblood.

If Peterson can't suit up for the opener in a little more than a week, or can't give the Vikings as many reps as they would like, Minnesota will rely heavily on third-year backup Toby Gerhart.

Gerhart was the Vikings' second-leading rusher in 2011, carrying the ball 109 times for 531 yards and a touchdown. His 4.9 yards-per-carry average was slightly better than Peterson's.

The former Stanford running back has rushed for 79 yards on 17 carries in three preseason games, which equates to a little more than 4.6 yards per run.

Although Gerhart is a reliable option for Minnesota in the backfield, only Peterson can provide it with a game-changing threat at running back. 

Stay tuned for all the latest news and notes on Adrian Peterson's knee injury and the status of both Vikings running backs as Week 1 of the NFL regular season approaches. 


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