"This is a very important issue," general manager Rick Spielman said Monday afternoon. "And I want to take time to emphasize that the issue of child welfare is extremely serious and should be taken serious not only by us, but by everybody. We are trying to do the right thing, this is a difficult path to navigate regarding the judgment of how a parent disciplines his child.
"Based on the extensive information that we have right now and what we know about Adrian, not only as a person, but what he has also done for this community, we believe he deserves to play while the legal process plays out. At the same time, we must defer to the legal system to determine whether he went too far. But we cannot make that judgment."
Spielman said the reason behind Peterson's deactivation on Sunday was that the team did not initially have all the information and felt it was in the best interest of the organization. Spielman added that after seeing the court files a decision was made to play Peterson this week.
"We feel strongly as an organization this is disciplining a child," the GM said. "When you look at the photos, they're disturbing. ... It is right for him to go though the process legally."
The Associated Press reported Monday that Peterson's attorney will seek to delay the initial court appearance because he is currently out of the country.
"It has nothing on him as a football player," Spielman said. "Purely on the facts that have been presented to us."
"Today's decision was made after significant thought, discussion and consideration. As evidenced by our decision to deactivate Adrian from yesterday's game, this is clearly a very important issue. On Friday, we felt it was in the best interests of the organization to step back, evaluate the situation, and not rush to judgment given the seriousness of this matter. At that time, we made the decision that we felt was best for the Vikings and all parties involved.
"To be clear, we take very seriously any matter that involves the welfare of a child. At this time, however, we believe this is a matter of due process and we should allow the legal system to proceed so we can come to the most effective conclusions and then determine the appropriate course of action. This is a difficult path to navigate, and our focus is on doing the right thing. Currently we believe we are at a juncture where the most appropriate next step is to allow the judicial process to move forward.
"We will continue to monitor the situation closely and support Adrian's fulfillment of his legal responsibilities throughout this process."