Adrian Peterson is trying to send a message by holding out of OTAs for the Minnesota Vikings, but it is not being heard. The running back has been the main storyline of the NFL offseason after he was reinstated back into the league. Peterson wants to move on from Minnesota, but they do not intend to loosen the reins on him. As head coach Mike Zimmer makes it clear that Peterson will not be traded, the running back is making it clear he wants a new contract.
The Vikings are well underway with OTAs and Peterson is nowhere to be found. According to Ben Goessling of ESPN.com, the running back wants to move on from the Vikings and is hoping his absence forces the team to trade him somewhere else. However, that deal is not in the plans for the Vikings as Zimmer told the media either Peterson will play for Minnesota or he will not play.
"He's not going to play for anybody else," Zimmer said, via ESPN.com. "He's missed a lot of OTAs over the course of his career. I'm not worried about it. I've got 89 guys out here that I'm coaching to try and get better. I don't know when he's coming. We'll just leave it at that."
Peterson is not getting the message from the Vikings. While he may have accepted the team has no plans of trading him to somewhere like Dallas or Arizona. However, the running back is now shifting his demands to his contract and not a move. Peterson is currently the highest-paid running back in the league, but that is not good enough for him. He wants to be set for his career and if the Vikings are not going to trade him then he wants to be in Minnesota for life.
"The reason I'm not attending OTAs has nothing to do with wanting to be traded," Peterson said, via a released statement to ESPN's Josina Anderson. "It's about securing my future with the Vikings. It's business, not personal and I understand that firsthand. Go Vikings."
For now, the Vikings are not focused on the battle with Peterson. Instead, Zimmer made it clear he is looking to push the players currently at practice. Teddy Bridgewater is looking to make the jump in his second year while Cordarrelle Patterson is approaching a critical season for his career. Jerick McKinnon and Matt Asiata will take over the run game until Peterson decides he wants to appear at practice.