George Iloka is the newest pre-season signing to the Minnesota Vikings, but the newest player to the team is already involved in controversy.
Shortly after Iloka signed with the Vikings they announced he would be wearing Adrian Peterson’s old number 28. And that sent Vikings fans into a frenzy.
@George_iloka— Tyler Berry (@TylerPatrick93) August 23, 2018
You need to refuse to wear #28. No Viking should ever wear that number again. #Disrespect@Vikings
You all should be ashamed of yourselves. @AdrianPeterson is a legend. Y'all need to respect that. Take #28 away from Mr Iloka
@AdrianPeterson hey when are the vikings going to retire your number to keep this disrespect from happening— Joe black (@Skolvikingsgo) August 22, 2018
Vikings gave George Iloka number 28 temporarily sheesh even in the preseason that’s disrespectful— Greg Holiday (@HolidayAve) August 23, 2018
But it isn’t just Vikings fans that have stated their disgust for Minnesota assigning 28 to anyone other than Peterson.
Erik Dickerson was on Undisputed and had some spicy comments about the 28 debate. “… But a player like Adrian Peterson, to me, will be a first ballot Hall of Famer for the Minnesota Vikings. (You know) No matter how it ended, he’s the guy. When you look at 28, not George whatever his name is (Iloka) nothing against him. But, but nothing against him.”
After those shade throwing comments Dickerson goes onto share a story about how in 1991 Todd Lyght refused to wear his number when the team assigned it to Lyght as a show of respect to Dickerson, which he obviously appreciated.
That story was more than likely a not so subtle suggestion about what Iloka should have done when the Vikings gave him Peterson’s numbers, but here’s what Dickerson needs to know. No one is disputing that Adrian Peterson should and probably will be a first ballot Hall of Fame player for the Vikings when he retires, no one is also disputing his stellar numbers, his amazing comeback, or that he was the face of the franchise for a decade. And Dickerson is right no matter how things ended with Minnesota and Peterson, those are things that will never be taken away from him.
But while everyone was busy grabbing the nearest pitchfork we all missed one thing, the Vikings have a full roster and needed a number for Iloka to wear for the rest of the pre-season. But more importantly we missed how Iloka felt about wearing Peterson’s number.
George Iloka probably won’t be wearing 28 for long— Dawn Mitchell (@DawnAtFOX9) August 22, 2018
“What Adrian Peterson was for the Minnesota Vikings, no one can match, future Hall of Famer... they just had to throw me the number to get out there. After everything settles down, most likely I’ll switch to a different number” pic.twitter.com/lf1v0Po7tl
So let’s collectively take a deep breath and remind ourselves that this too shall pass and wait for the next thing to debate.