Outside of the random social media post, Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson has been somewhat quiet since the entire child abuse scandal broke during the summer.
And for good reason.
Peterson has been on the receiving end of a storm of negativity from the media. He has also been dealing with the legalities that come with being charged with child abuse.
That changed on Thursday when Peterson opened up to USA Today’s Tom Pelissero in an amazing piece from the veteran scribe.
I won’t ever use a switch again,” Peterson said. “There’s different situations where a child needs to be disciplined as far as timeout, taking their toys away, making them take a nap. There’s so many different ways to discipline your kids.
Peterson’s defense has been that he grew up in a household in which “switches” were used on a constant basis. He also opened up about the use of corporal punishment in school when he was growing up.
I got paddled at school,” Peterson said. “People up north don’t know anything about that, about going to the principal’s office and getting three swats on your behind with a board with a hole cut in it.
While not necessarily a firm defense, it does speak to Peterson’s state of mind when he made the unfortunate decision to use corporal punishment against his child.
Peterson declined to comment on his case, but did talk about the release of the photos that indicted him to the masses.
That’s illegal,” Peterson said. “For someone who wears the badge to disregard their badge and commit a crime says a lot. (But) no one cares how the pictures were released. All they care about is, ‘Hey, these are the pictures. They say that he put leaves in his mouth. They say that he beat him. They say that I hit his hands (and those were) defensive wounds.”
In the end, Peterson would like to see the individual that leaked the photos brought to justice. And in reality, that’s something that should happen down the road.
Peterson also wanted to make sure that everyone knew he was taking responsibility, which runs contrary to Roger Goodell’s opinion of the Vikings running back.
I take full responsibility, because I spanked my child, and no matter what my intentions were, I end up leaving those marks on his legs,” Peterson said. “That’s the bottom line.
“That’s not what I tried to do, but that’s what ended up happening. Don’t put me in the same (category as Rice).
Goodell indicated that Peterson didn’t show any remorse for his actions when the commissioner suspended him for the remainder of the year earlier this week.
And while he has been looped into the conversation with Rice over the past few months, that’s more about the NFL’s handling of their situations. As Peterson himself indicated, he should’t be put in the same category as the former Baltimore Ravens running back.
No matter how this ends, I am pretty sure we can all agree that the hope here is for Peterson to get the parenting classes that he needs and to have a relationship with his children. If it acts as a learning experience for Peterson, we can all move on from this and wish him the best of luck moving forward, both on and off the field.
Check out Tom Pelissero’s in-depth interview with Peterson right here.