Peterson has been out since Week 2 with a knee injury and was placed on injured reserve with a designation to return. The Vikings announced they activated Peterson from IR on Saturday. On Sunday, NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reported Peterson will start. Rapoport added that Peterson will not be on a snap count, but the Vikings "don't want to run him into the ground."
The 31-year-old has just 50 rushing yards on 31 carries in 2016.
Per Dash Radio (via John Shipley of the Pioneer Press), Peterson said Monday he would practice this week for the first time since the injury, and he initially expected to make his return in Week 16 against the Green Bay Packers.
After acknowledging Friday that his torn meniscus should require a four- to six-month recovery, he said, "I'm extremely hungry to get out there and help these guys win," per Matt Vensel of the Star Tribune.
Peterson has gone to seven Pro Bowls and has been a first-team All-Pro four times. He's led the league in rushing yards three different times, including his MVP year in 2012 (2,097 yards).
Minnesota has struggled to run the ball without him; Jerick McKinnon and Matt Asiata have combined for just 742 rushing yards on 236 carries. The squad is dead last in the NFL in both rushing yards per game (73.4) and yards per attempt (3.0).
Peterson's return would be a huge addition to the 7-6 squad as it battles for a playoff spot down the stretch.