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Did Someone Really Just Suggest That The Vikings Trade Adrian Peterson?

I saw that "davver" had posted this article in our FanPosts section, and while I don't want to just copy and paste the whole article here, I did want to put forth some thoughts on it.

The folks at Football Outsiders have posted an article entitled "Fixing the Vikings." While the article makes some good points about our favorite football team, its central premise is flawed, in my opinion, because it involves the Vikings trading away their best player.

Can you imagine the booty Peterson could bag? I'm not talking about the aftermath of six-figure drinking with Bryant McKinnie. I'm talking about Rick Speilman fielding trade offers for AP. Every NFL team wants a great running back, and Minnesota has one. New England and Indianapolis historically acquire picks, but they may spare some to land a star of Peterson's ilk for the end of their quarterback's careers. Bill Belichick wants someone to spread the field, and his first-round picks look mighty appealing. The Colts running game was a nightmare in 2010 and made the team ridiculously one-dimensional. A move for Peterson would propel Jim Irsay's tweets to unprecedented levels and help Indy play a Super Bowl at home. Hell, habitual acquirer Daniel Snyder might make Zygi Wilf an offer he can't refuse if Peterson develops a taste for wine. In Texas, one owner may like to see the local kid fill up the big screen every Sunday. Plenty of other NFL teams need a running back too, and some may make the move just to invigorate fans.

After the jump, let's discuss this a little further.

I really don't think there's any chance that the Vikings would entertain the thought of dealing Adrian Peterson at this point in time, or at any other point in time, to be honest. For starters, while the Vikings may be in a "rebuilding" mode, they need to have at least something on their offense that they can depend on, and that something in this case is Adrian Peterson. Whether the Vikings' quarterback in 2011 is Joe Webb, a drafted rookie, or a veteran that is going to be the bridge to one of those two players, the Vikings' offense needs Adrian Peterson this upcoming season. Keep in mind, Peterson is already averaging about 1,450 yards a season since he got to the NFL, and in only one of those seasons did he have a passing game to supplement him that was actually worth anything.

Don't get me wrong, I love me some Toby Gerhart and all that, but at this point in his career he's clearly better as a supplement than a guy that's going to be the main back to "carry the mail" for the Minnesota Vikings. If Bill Musgrave wants any chance of keeping defenses honest and keeping his quarterback. . .whoever he is. . .from getting killed in 2011, Adrian Peterson needs to be a part of this team. If he gets the 300+ carries that he should, he'll put up another 1,400 to 1,500 yards (barring injury, obviously), and will ease any growing pains of Minnesota's offensive transition.

Second of all, let's not fool ourselves. . .quite possibly more important in the mind of Zygi Wilf and company, at this point. . .would be the PR hit the team would take if they were to deal away their best and most recognizable player. Remember, the Vikings are in the middle of a stadium chase, and dealing away a player of Peterson's caliber at this point in time could only mean bad, bad things on that front. It would send a signal that Wilf isn't interested in being competitive on the field in 2011, and simply wants a stadium and the profits that would come from it. Now, the more hardcore Viking fans among us know. . .or, at the very least, hope. . .that that isn't true, but it would be much harder to convince the more casual fan of that.

Third, while the idea of getting a boatload of draft picks for Adrian Peterson sounds nice, but the reality is that it simply wouldn't happen. The author of the FO article mentions the Patriots as a possible destination for Peterson, and getting both of New England's first-round picks this season in exchange. But later in the same article, the author points out that the Patriots have a guy in BenJarvus Green-Ellis, an undrafted free agent, that ran for over 1,000 yards last season. . .and they supplement him with Danny Woodhead, another undrafted free agent, that ran for over 500 yards as well. If Bill Belichick is going to get that kind of production out of a couple of nobodies (comparatively in terms of name recognition, not as a slight on their abilities), why is he going to send two first-round picks to Minnesota for Adrian Peterson? Because he's not, that's why.

Trading Adrian Peterson may sound like a good idea, but it's knee-jerk and reactionary at best. Thankfully, I think we can all take solace in the fact that, in the words of American philosopher Carl Brutananadilewski, it is never freakin' happening.