Adrian Peterson will reportedly be watching football as the NFL season comes to a start.
As Yahoo! Sports reported, the Washington Redskins planned to make Peterson inactive for the team’s season opener against the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday. The report noted that the writing had been on the wall for Peterson, as Redskins head coach Jay Gruden was already noncommittal about what role Peterson might be playing with the team and he sank further down the team’s depth chart.
The move comes just days after reports that the Redskins may have been planning to cut Peterson in order to give more playing time to Derrius Guice, the team’s 2018 second-round pick who missed his entire rookie season after tearing his ACL. Earlier this week, 106.7 The Fan in Washington reported that head coach Jay Gruden did not want to keep Peterson on the roster to start the season, prompting an argument with the team’s front office.
As the report noted, Gruden was not pleased with the way Peterson has been accepting playing a backup role to Guice.
“[Peterson] likes to get in Jay’s ear if he’s not playing. And Jay doesn’t want to deal with it,” the station’s Jason Bishop said this week. “And that’s a well-placed source that told us that. And so there was a fight… apparently, there was some sort of a disagreement on Saturday over [at Redskins] Park about it.”
Gruden had already said that Guice would be the team’s starter and would be complemented by Chris Thompson, who is adept at catching passes out of the backfield and will likely be playing on passing downs. Running back Wendell Smallwood had also jumped over Adrian Peterson on the roster due to Smallwood’s ability to play special teams.
The #Redskins are planning to make RB Adrian Peterson inactive for today’s game against the #Eagles, per me and @MikeGarafolo. Last year’s starter is now surprisingly a spectator. Our story: https://t.co/auQwBgLV6s
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) September 8, 2019
As Yahoo! Sports noted, the only way that Adrian Peterson would have been in the lineup for Sunday’s game against the Eagles is if the Redskins decided to dress four running backs, which apparently was not in the cards for Gruden.
Despite the signs that Adrian Peterson would not be on the field on Sunday, his being inactive comes as a bit of a surprise given his bigger role with the team in 2018. Peterson enjoyed a bounce-back season after struggling with the Arizona Cardinals and New Orleans Saints in 2017, rushing for 1,042 yards in 2018.
It’s not clear what the future might hold for Adrian Peterson, including whether the Washington Redskins could still release him.