Adrian Peterson has a rather lofty opinion of his NFL accomplishments.
As the NFL welcomed eight new men into the Hall of Fame on Saturday, Peterson reflected on his own career while speaking with reporters. Let’s just say he wasn’t shy.
“I’m going to be blunt and honest with you. I feel like if I didn’t play another snap in my life, I got the opportunity to go in the Hall of Fame right now,” Peterson told the Star Tribune.
He calls his eventual induction into Canton a “no-brainer,” and took his statement to the next level, saying he wants to be remembered as the greatest player in history—at any position.
“Not just the greatest running back,” he points out. “The greatest player.”
First thing’s first: If Peterson didn’t take another snap, he isn’t a “no-brainer” to get into Canton. Sure, he probably would, but it’s far from guaranteed. The biggest thing going for him at this point is his near-historic 2012 campaign when he came within eight yards of breaking Eric Dickerson’s all-time single-season rushing record.
But that might not be enough.
Heck, he isn’t even first among his current peers right now in terms of rushing yardage. Frank Gore and Stephen Jackson both have more yards on the ground than “All Day,” and nobody would consider them locks to get into the Hall of Fame.
Looking at the list of all-time career rushing yards, men like Fred Taylor, Warrick Dunn, Ricky Watters, Eddie George and Tiki Barber are all ahead of Peterson. None of these men are in the Hall of Fame, and it’s not likely they’ll be inducted any time soon. Furthermore, his 91 career touchdowns don’t even rank among the top 25 in history.
So, not only is Peterson not a lock to make it into the Hall of Fame, but his stated goal to be the best player ever—at any position—is beyond absurd. As good as he’s been, he’s no Jim Brown, and you cannot even make the argument that he’s even the best player of his own generation.
Football players can be notably brash, and their confidence serves them well on the field of play. However, in this case, Peterson would have been wise to keep his thoughts to himself.
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