Adrian Peterson trade idea: Should Minnesota Vikings do it?

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Adrian Peterson is the NFL's reigning MVP, again sits among the league leaders in rushing -- and should be traded by the Minnesota Vikings. At least that's what one Minnesota newspaper columnist argues. His rationale? The Vikes are 1-4, going nowhere and need a host of better players, not one star. Do you agree, or should Minnesota stand pat with Peterson?

  • Charley Casserly NFL Network
  • What is this, fantasy football? Vikings would never get enough in return

    This is fantasy football at its best. First of all, there has to be a team willing to do this. That team, of course, must need a running back, not need a quarterback (if it is willing to give up high-value draft picks), be playoff-caliber and have a lot of available salary-cap room.

    One team that theoretically could fit those criteria is the Cincinnati Bengals, but this isn't something they would do. Other teams will have a lot of cap room next year but don't need a running back (the Chicago Bears come to mind). The New York Jets have a lot of cap room, but is Peterson the missing link to put them in the playoffs? I don't think so. They need to get the QB spot figured out first -- and must keep their draft choices to keep building for the future.

    That is why I call this fantasy football. In reality, the Vikings just wouldn't get a big enough payout for Peterson. Would I trade Peterson if somebody gave me the Herschel Walker deal? Absolutely. If somebody offered me a first-rounder, plus another draft pick, I would say no. And regardless, right now, Minnesota is a QB away from being a playoff team.
  • Bucky Brooks
  • Minnesota would be wise to explore trades while Peterson's value remains high

    As crazy as the trade sounds, it might not be a bad idea to trade Peterson for a few top draft picks and a young emerging player. While Peterson is a likely Hall of Famer, he is on the verge of becoming a descending player at this point of his career. Now, I know some will dispute that fact -- based on his 2,000-yard season in 2012 -- but history suggests most running backs never regain their form after such a stellar season, particularly at Peterson's age (28). Factor in the wear and tear of 1,800-plus carries over a seven-year NFL career, and it's unlikely Peterson will continue to perform at an elite level for the next three seasons.

    A wise baseball man, Branch Rickey, once said it's better to get rid of a player a year too early rather than a year too late. The rationale behind that statement: You can maximize a player's value while he's still viewed as elite, which translates into better trade value for draft picks, etc. Bill Polian adhered to the strategy when he dumped Marshall Faulk in a trade that helped the Indianapolis Colts build the foundation of a team that consistently competed for the AFC championship for more than a decade.

    Therefore, the Vikings would be wise to explore the trade possibilities and make a move if they can net enough top picks to plug a few holes on their roster (defensive end and quarterback). This could spark a return to relevance in the NFC. Remember, good general managers make moves without allowing the sentimental value of players to cloud the equation.
  • Jason Smith
  • Adrian Peterson is the football version of Albert Pujols

    I look at Adrian Peterson today the same way I looked at Albert Pujols a couple years ago. When the St. Louis Cardinals decided to part ways with their iconic slugger, I understood their thinking. The Cards knew they already had seen the best of Pujols. He was getting older and had suffered a few injuries, so it made sense then -- and continues to make sense now, as St. Louis has made the NLCS in both seasons since the divorce.

    The same goes with Peterson. He's 28, and with a violent running style that leaves him susceptible to getting hurt, he won't enjoy more than three or four more effective years -- max. But any team would fall all over themselves for three or four more years of Peterson as "the missing piece" to a Super Bowl puzzle. (Not to build the team around, but to add to a roster that's already pretty good.) I don't know if you'll get a Herschel Walker-type deal for him, but certainly you can get a combination of high draft picks and two or three starters in return.

    When you make the best running back in football available, everyone will want in.
  • Adam Rank
  • Vikings and Cowboys could execute another Herschel Walker trade -- in reverse!

    The NFL really needs some blockbuster trades, so it would be awesome to see the Vikings receive a wealth of riches for Adrian Peterson. I would like to imagine a team on the cusp of the playoffs/title contention making a move. And when I think of this, I can't help but imagine what Cowboys boss Jerry Jones would give up to get Peterson on America's Team. It would be the Herschel Walker trade ... in reverse!


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