New Orleans Saints running back Adrian Peterson was at the team’s facility on Tuesday to make his first real public comments since signing a free agent contract last month.
A future Hall of Famer, Peterson saw the Minnesota Vikings decline his option for the 2017 season prior to the start of free agency. He then had to wait a few long weeks before finally inking a deal with New Orleans.
At 32 years old and coming off an injury-plagued 2016 season that saw him miss all but three games, most figure that Peterson’s best days are behind him. Heck, there’s surely a scenario in play here that suggests he will be the backup to Mark Ingram in New Orleans (more on that here).
Despite this, Peterson still seems to think he has a lot of good football left in him.
Peterson: "In my mind, I feel like I have a lot of years left" #Saints
— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) May 2, 2017
That’s a pretty stunning proclamation to make. Most running backs tend to slow down once they hit the 30-year-old plateau. And having played in a grand total of 20 games since the end of the 2013 season, Peterson himself seems to be on the back-end of his career.
Peterson may believe he has a lot of good football left in him, but the two-year, $7 million deal New Orleans handed him seems to suggest that the Saints are looking at him as a short-term option. The deal called for $3.5 million guaranteed and enables the Saints to get out from under it with a mere $1.3 million cap hit following the 2017 season.