As he continues to make excellent progress in his recovery from last season’s devastating knee injury, Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson now could play in the team’s third preseason game next Friday against the San Diego Chargers. Head coach Leslie Frazier suggested on Sunday that Peterson could play in the game if he responds well during the week of practice as the team tries to ramp up his workload each day.
Coincidentally, if Peterson plays next Friday (August 24) it will be the eight month anniversary of when he suffered his injury against the Washington Redskins and returning to game action so quickly is a very significant milestone. He is unlikely to see many carries in the game if he does suit up, but it will be very interesting to see how he responds physically to game action and to some degree how the Chargers’ defense treats him when faced with tackling him.
Peterson’s goal from the start has been to be ready for Week 1 against the Jacksonville Jaguars, and team doctors would definitely not be clearing him for contact if he has not made sufficient progress. As long as he remains on track and avoids setbacks as his practice work is ramped up and he possibly sees action in a game, Peterson should reach his original goal even if his workload is limited early in the season when the games count.
Recovery from a torn ACL can vary from player to player, but Peterson has been on the early side in his progress all along and having what looks to be very few restrictions at this point continues on that trajectory. His mere presence, to say nothing of how effective he actually is on the field, should give the entire Vikings’ team a shot in the arm as they look to put last season’s 3-13 record behind them.