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Report: Cowboys could be option as potential landing spot for Adrian Peterson

By Judd Zulgad

Adrian Peterson grew up in Palestine, Texas, rooting for the Dallas Cowboys and idolizing Emmitt Smith and Deion Sanders.

So it came as no surprise in August 2014 when ESPN reported in a story about Cowboys owner Jerry Jones that the Vikings running back had expressed interest in playing for Dallas. Jones also liked the idea.

Any chance of that happening appeared to die when the Cowboys took Ezekiel Elliott in the first round of the draft last spring. The running back set team rookie marks in rushing yards (1,631) and touchdowns (16) as the Cowboys went 13-3 this season. Elliott finished runner-up to teammate and quarterback Dak Prescott in the Associated Press Offensive Rookie of the Year voting.

However, there now appears to be a chance that Peterson could wind up in Dallas if the Vikings, as expected, elect not to pick up a $6 million option on his contract this March.

Adam Schefter reported Sunday that there is a belief in league circles that the Cowboys could also be in play for Peterson. A league source told Schefter that if the Vikings and Peterson could not agree on a restructured contract, the Cowboys could become an option.

While there remains a chance Peterson returns to Minnesota for an 11th season, there is almost no chance he does so on his current contract. The Vikings hold a team option on Peterson for next season. It includes an $11.75 million base salary and a $6 million roster bonus due on the third day of the league year. That would be March 12. A decision will have to be made on Peterson by the start of the league year on March 9.

Peterson will turn 32 on March 21 and played in only three games this past season because of a knee injury. He has missed the majority of two of the past three seasons and, even if he hadn’t missed time, Peterson’s salary isn’t close to being in line with the majority of running backs in this league.

Last month, Peterson was asked on ESPN to name teams he would consider playing for if he leaves Minnesota. He named Houston, Tampa Bay and the New York Giants.

Dallas might seem like a good fit to Peterson, given he would get to end his career in his home state and playing with a star on his helmet, but one has to wonder if he would be able to accept a limited role behind Elliott.

Peterson has never been very good at catching passes out of the backfield and his limitations in pass protection mean he also isn’t a reliable third down back. So he likely would get snaps as a backup on first and second down.

Would that be enough for Peterson, if the tradeoff means getting to play for the team he grew up rooting for and being on a Super Bowl contender? We should find out in about a month.

The post Report: Cowboys could be option as potential landing spot for Adrian Peterson appeared first on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.

Source:: 1500 ESPN Sportswire

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