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Mark Wilf: "We'd Love to Have Adrian Peterson Back"

Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

On Wednesday, Mark and Zygi Wilf were at the University of Minnesota Masonic Hospital to dedicate the Wilf Family Center, having made a $5 million donation to the hospital. After the dedication ceremony was over, questions from the crowd inevitably turned to the subject of Adrian Peterson and his potential return to the Minnesota Vikings.

Rather than brushing off the question, as he could have in this situation, Vikings' president Mark Wilf dropped what appears to be a bit of a bombshell.

"Adrian's done a lot of good in this community," Wilf said. "He's done a lot for us on the football field, as well. Of course, he's a Minnesota Viking, and we'd love to have him back. And of course, a lot depends on the NFL and steps he's making in his own personal journey. That's where we're at with it."

To this point, a lot of people connected with the Minnesota Vikings' organization have come out and said that they want Peterson back in purple next year. That list includes head coach Mike Zimmer, "all the players" (according to wide receiver Greg Jennings), and Peterson himself. But this is the first time that anyone from the Wilf family has come out and said that they want Peterson back in the fold in 2015.

Now, this may simply be some sort of off-season doublespeak or the Vikings not wanting to tip their hand about what their intentions are in free agency or in the NFL Draft. But, for the first time since this entire saga began back in September, those that are wanting to see the NFL's best running back lining up behind Teddy Bridgewater this season have plenty of reason for optimism.

We're still awaiting a ruling from Judge David Doty on Peterson's appeal of his suspension in his quest for reinstatement before the NFL's (incredibly arbitrary) potential reinstatement date of 15 April. Free Agency kicks off in 10 March, and the sooner a ruling comes down on that, the sooner we'll likely know whether or not Adrian Peterson really will be back in the mix with the Minnesota Vikings.