2017 NFL Free Agency: Adrian Peterson Contract Projection

Adrian Peterson | 2017 NFL Free Agent | Minnesota Vikings | NFL Contract Projections

HT: 6-1 WT: 220 Age: 31 Seasons: 10
Status: UFA

Minnesota Vikings Cap Savings: $18M

Adrian Peterson Scouting Report

Positives
Has been the undeniable best back of this generation. Size. Strength. Speed. Last time we saw him, he still had the speed to accelerate through holes and get chunks. Delivers punishment when finishing runs. Fights for every inch. Good vision. Transcendent talent. Just a year removed from being the best RB in the league.

Negatives
Coming off a second major knee injury (2016 – Meniscus; 2011 ACL). Comes off the field on most passing downs. Always dealt with fumble issues. Struggles out of the shotgun.

Adrian Peterson Statistics

  • Best season: 348 carries, 2,097 yards, 131.1 YPG, 12 TD
  • Previous 2-year average (AVG): 9.5 games, 182 carries, 778.5 yards, 81.9 YPG, 5.5 TD
  • Last “Full” Season: 327 carries, 1,485 yards, 92.8 YPG, 11 TD (2015)

Adrian Peterson Player Comparables

DeMarco Murray, Tennessee Titans

  • Contract: 4 year, $25.25M; $6.3M AVG, $12.5M GTD, $9M FG (2016)
  • 2-year AVG:
  • 2017 CAP: $27.2M; $6.8M AVG, $13.5M GTD, $9.7M FG

Matt Forte, New York Jets

  • Contract: 3 year, $12M; $4M AVG, $9M FG, $4M Incentives (2016)
  • 2-year AVG: 14.5 games, 242 carries, 968 yards, 598.5 REC yards, 108 Total YPG, 8.5 TD
  • 2017 salary cap adjustment (CAP): $13M; $4.3M AVG, $9.75M FG

Frank Gore, Indianapolis Colts

  • Contract: 3 year, $12M; $4M AVG, $7.5M GTD, $4.5M FG (2015)
  • 2-year AVG: 265.5 carries, 1115.5 yards, 69.7 YPG, 7 TD
  • 2017 CAP: $14.1M; $4.7M AVG, $8.8M GTD, $5.3M FG

Adrian Peterson Leverage

Forte, Gore and Foster are each on the wrong side of 30. Peterson, like Forte and Gore, will be an unrestricted free agent, albeit coming off a torn meniscus. Peterson, like Foster, is coming off greatly shortened season, but he is far from the injury liability Foster was. Gore entered free agency has the pillar of consistency, eclipsing the 1,000-yard threshold in 8 of his previous 9 seasons. Murray was traded to the Titans and agreed to take a pay cut to play in Tennessee; he was also the youngest of the group. However, none of the four have the credentials, talent or brand power as Peterson. He also has the luxury of a low-threshold for incentives. A team can add Not Likely To Be Earned (NLTBE) incentives without being charged against the cap this season.

Alternatives to Long-Term Agreement

Adrian Peterson – Retire or sign one-year deal.

Adrian Peterson Reservation Price

Peterson’s reservation price will be whatever number he feels isn’t enough to keep playing. There will be a market for Peterson, and he will make more than the $1M veteran minimum for players with 10 credited seasons. It’s hard to see him getting less than Forte and Gore’s $4M average salary.

Projection:  3 years, $17M; $5.7M AVG, $8.5M GTD, $4.5M FG

Adrian Peterson Contract Structure

Signing Bonus – $3M
2017 – $1.5M base
2018 – $3M base + $4M roster bonus
2019 – $4M base + $1.5M roster bonus
*Roster bonuses due third day of 2018 and 2019 League Year

*Contract information from Over The Cap, Spotrac, Pro Football Talk, and/or other sources.

*Statistics from NFL.com

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