Adrian Peterson Plans to Return Next Year After Season-Ending Neck Injury

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured ColumnistDecember 15, 2017

HOUSTON, TX - NOVEMBER 19:  Adrian Peterson #23 of the Arizona Cardinals runs the ball in the first quarter against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium on November 19, 2017 in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)
Tim Warner/Getty Images

Adrian Peterson told ESPN's Josina Anderson on Friday that he's planning on returning for the 2018 season after the Arizona Cardinals placed him on injured reserve Thursday with a neck injury. 

"The good news is my neck injury doesn't require surgery, but I'm told by Dr. Robert Watkins that the best thing for me is just more rest than the length of this season" Peterson said. "Obviously, I'm disappointed about going on IR when my body is still able to produce, but I look forward to returning completely healthy for another season in 2018. I'm grateful for the opportunity that the Arizona Cardinals have given me to show that I can still contribute on an NFL team." 

Peterson, 32, signed a two-year, $7 million deal with the New Orleans Saints in April following an extended search for a new club in free agency, but his tenure in the Big Easy lasted all of four games. 

After rushing for 81 yards on 27 carries over the first month of the season, Peterson was dealt to the Cardinals in exchange for a 2018 conditional sixth-round draft pick. 

Peterson promptly came alive with the Cardinals, rushing for 134 yards and a pair of scores in his desert debut. He topped the century mark again Nov. 5 when he torched the San Francisco 49ers for a season-high 159 yards on the ground. 

All told, Peterson piled up 129 carries for 448 yards and two touchdowns in six games before he was shut down for the season. 

The question now is what the future holds for the 2012 NFL MVP. 

While Peterson is under contract in 2018, the Cardinals can cut him before June 1 and save $3.5 million against the cap. 

However, Arizona could certainly do worse than an interior bruiser of Peterson's ilk as a backup to David Johnson while the 2016 scrimmage yards leader prepares for a return from a wrist injury that derailed his 2017 campaign. 

Contract information courtesy of Spotrac.com

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