"I don't know if he'll be back. I can't answer that question," Jennings said. "But what I do know is that if he does come back, he'd be accepted with open arms. As an organization from the Wilfs on down, we all want him back. So, I mean, it's a touchy subject and he's been the franchise player -- face of that team -- for eight years. So it will be a loss, a huge loss, if we can't get him back, and that's the nature of this business."
In November, Peterson was suspended by the league without pay for the rest of the season, making him ineligible for reinstatement until at least April 15. The move came after Peterson pleaded no contest to recklessly injuring his 4-year-old son last May. He is under contract with the Vikings for next season, and is set to earn $12.75 million.
It's unclear at this point if Jennings has talked to Zygi and Mark Wilf about the Peterson situation. What is clear is that the team is not allowed to communicate with Peterson during his suspension.
Peterson will begin community service, and will undergo counseling to determine whether he has a drug problem. Peterson will report to a probation officer once a month in order to take a drug test. The strict drug testing stems from an Oct. 8 pre-trail urinalysis. Peterson admitted to "smoking a little weed," though the results from the test were never disclosed.
Probation officials will also determine whether Peterson needs to attend parenting classes.
Per his plea agreement, Peterson was fined $4,000 and ordered to perform 80 hours of community service. He's required to perform at least 16 hours per month, which would allow him to complete to program prior to training camp.
Peterson is under contract with the Vikings for next season, and is set to earn $12.75 million. The team is not allowed to communicate with Peterson during his suspension.
The NFL Players Association filed a legal brief saying Commissioner Roger Goodell's requirement that
In November, Goodell suspended Peterson without pay for the rest of the season and said the
In his letter to Peterson, Goodell set several requirements for reinstatement, including counseling.
"In order to assess your progress going forward, I will establish periodic reviews, the first of which will be on or about April 15, 2015," the commisssioner wrote. "At that time, I will meet with you and your representatives and the NFLPA to review the extent to which you have complied with your program of counseling and therapy and both made and lived up to an affirmative commitment to change such that this conduct will not occur again. A failure to cooperate and follow your plan will result in a lengthier suspension without pay."
Peterson, who turns 30 in two months, carries a cap hit of $15.4 million in 2015. In an interview with ESPN, Peterson "scoffed at the suggestion that he take a pay cut to remain with the Vikings," the paper noted. "Can he and the Vikings find common ground? Or is Peterson ready for a fresh start elsewhere?"
Currently suspended, Peterson can apply for NFL reinstatement on April 15. He pleaded no contest to recklessly injuring his 4-year-old son, a misdemeanor, last May.
"I don’t know if there’s a team in the NFL that wouldn’t want Adrian Peterson on the football team," Spielman said. "I know that Adrian is a good person, just being around him. I know he’s done a lot of good in this community."
Peterson is eligible to apply for reinstate through the league on April 15. He played just one game in 2014 after news of a child abuse charge broke. Peterson was initially placed on the exempt list, but was eventually suspended after pleading no contest to a misdemeanor charge. Peterson appealed the ruling, but the suspension was upheld.
Spielman expects no dropoff from the 29-year-old Peterson when he's able to return. "He’s going to play at a very high level when he comes back. I’m anticipating that."
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