Saints RB coach: 'Matter of time' until A.P. gets chance

Adrian Peterson's usage in New Orleans seems a puzzling query at the season's quarter mark.

The Saints running back has played in just 42 offensive snaps this season, per Next Gen Stats. To put it into perspective that's one fewer than kicker Wil Lutz. All Day, one of the greatest running backs of all time, can't get on the field more than the dadgum kicker.

On those 42 snaps, Peterson has touched the ball 29 times. His 27 rushes have gone for 81 yards, a meager 3.0 yards per carry. Most of the snaps and carries have gone to Mark Ingram (132 snaps) and rookie Alvin Kamara (108 snaps).

Even in a shutout victory in London on Sunday, when you'd expect Peterson to help salt away the win, the running back saw just six snaps and four carries (for four yards).

Despite Peterson currently collecting dust on the sideline, running backs coach Joel Thomas told Herbie Teope of The New Orleans Times-Picayune the 32-year-old runner will get his chance eventually.

"It's just a matter of time," Thomas said. "I really feel like this block, it's going to break.

"We just have to keep on chipping and you keep grinding, keep getting after something and ultimately something positive is going to come out of this."

Outside of an injury to Ingram, it's hard to see a place for Peterson in the running back rotation. Drew Brees' offense simply functions better with All Day, spending his afternoons on the sideline. His lack threat in the passing game hinders the Saints offense.

Thomas pointed to game-flow as the reason Peterson has been tethered to the bench. Kamara, for instance, was targeted heavily in Sunday's win, catching 10 passes for 71 yards and a score.

"Immediately all of sudden AK is getting open," Thomas said. "So, boom, we flip the switch, got off that and you see a guy that's hitting, converting on first downs, five targets, completions, all this stuff."

"There's some wiggle there as far as that goes, but unfortunately like the last game there's a couple of series in there that AD is starting off and going, and we're three-and-out."

Part of those three-and-outs are a product of the inefficiency of Peterson's carries.

While Peterson has yet to cause much of a public ruckus about his role, it's worth wondering if he'll continue to bite his tongue if he remains stuck on the sideline.

"He's been a professional about it," Thomas said. "I mean, go to high school, go to college, go to pros: When was the last time he was kind of second fiddle in an offense?

"He comes down, he practices hard, and he asks the questions in meetings. When he needs to be corrected, he takes it, he rolls with it and I have nothing but respect for the man. Regardless what he's done in the past, it's what he's been doing here."

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