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Bleacher Report – Vikings

Will price tag for Eddie Lacy affect Vikings’ thinking on Peterson?

By Matthew Coller

As the Minnesota Vikings mull over their options with running back Adrian Peterson, one thing they consider will be the price tag of other running backs. A Milwaukee Journal-Sentinal report on Green Bay free agent running back Eddie Lacy suggests he could make a lot less than you might expect on the open market.

“I contacted an agent who has studied the running back market because of a client hitting free agency, and he guessed that Lacy will get a deal worth about $2 million plus plenty of incentives,” Packers reporter Pete Dougherty wrote. “Maybe it will end up being more, but if it’s even near that range, that’s low risk for the Packers.”

Not only would that price be easy to top for the Vikings, but it could influence their thought process if Peterson asks for anywhere between $6-$10 million per year. Releasing or renegotiating Peterson’s contract is almost a given at this point with the future Hall of Famer set to make $18 million in 2017.

Lacy’s career isn’t anywhere close to Peterson’s, but teams pay for what they’re going to get, not what they got in the past and Lacy averaged 5.1 Yards Per Carry last season, though his year was shortened by injury.

Pricing one of the top backs at $2 million would mean that signing someone like Oakland free agent Latavius Murray would cost far less than Peterson’s likely contract requirement to stay in Minnesota.

Statistically, Peterson is no longer far above these runners. In 2015, he led the NFL in rushing, but averaged only 4.4 Yards Per Carry, which is exactly the same as Lacy’s career mark and only 0.2 ahead of Murray’s. And both Lacy and Murray are more than five years younger than Peterson.

Minnesota’s long-time face will run into another challenge at the bargaining table: One-dimensional backs don’t tend to get paid as much. Consider that the league’s top pure running back LeGarrette Blount, who ran 299 times and was rarely used in the passing game, earned just $1 million in 2015.

If the Vikings are still on the fence about Peterson as we head toward the beginning of free agency, it would make sense for them to wait to see the price tag for other backs before making their offer.

The post Will price tag for Eddie Lacy affect Vikings’ thinking on Peterson? appeared first on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.

Source:: 1500 ESPN Sportswire

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