Peterson Traded | Time For All Day To Go Another Way
by Jarvis Mahogany Scores & Statson
Taking a brief moment away from talk of who is kneeling and who is injured this week to talk about a big name trade in the NFL. The Cardinals acquired running back Adrian Peterson 10 years after passing on him in the 2007 draft to select tackle Levi Brown with the fifth pick. The Saints agreed to trade the running back to Arizona in exchange for a 2018 undisclosed draft pick (later revealed to be conditional 6th round). To make room for Peterson on the roster the Cardinals have waived last weeks starting running back Chris Johnson.
The question will continue to be, what does the 32-year-old Peterson actually have left in the tank? Let's take a look at a few things as far what can be accomplished with this trade and why it was done.
Video: Adrian Peterson’s Dominant Career Highlights
Why The Saints Made The Trade
It's easy to see from their perspective, it's Alvin Kamara. Peterson was never a really good fit with the scheme, and the emergence of rookie Kamara made the Peterson signing look ill advised. Adrian Peterson’s stats show he had just 27 carries for 81 yards for the Saints with his longest run being 11 yards. Kamara has looked electric, and when paired with the consistent Mark Ingram there just were not a lot of carries left over for Peterson.
Peterson admitted last week that he was beginning to get frustrated with his shrinking role in New Orleans. Many thought it was only a matter of time before additional issues began to arise. Peterson was hoping to be able to take advantage of fewer guys in the box in New Orleans, but that never materialized. Saints coach Payton hinted the Saints may not have felt inclined to sign Peterson if they had known they were going to get Kamara in the draft.
Since all-world running back David Johnson went down with an injury in week 1, the Cardinals running game has been abysmal. They currently rank last in rushing yards per game, with 51.8, and last in yards per carry at 2.59. The Cardinals lack of a running game was on full display in last Sunday's 34-7 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles where the Cardinals managed only 31 yards rushing as a team. Bottom line is they are desperate for production from the running game as this is basically the last gasp effort for a team that has many players on the wrong side of 30 and is facing a full rebuild in the next year or so.
Peterson averaged 3.0 yards per carry, which despite not being good, is still an upgrade over Chris Johnson (2.5 yards on 45 carries) and Kerwynn Williams (1.7 yards on 19 rushes). If Peterson is going to succeed in Arizona he will have to do it with an offensive line that is struggling mightily. Injuries to left tackle D.J. Humphries in week 1 and left guard Mike Iupati were just the beginning of the line injuries that have the left the unit with little ability to become the cohesive group needed to succeed.
Many that have a realistic output do not think Adrian Peterson is the savior to what ails the Cardinals running game. But there is hope with a few lineman returning from injury that he can be a slight upgrade over the previous rushers and get the run game closer to maybe average than sitting at thebottom. Time will tell and it starts Sunday in Arizona as the Cardinals hosts the Buccaneers and currently sit between a +1.5 and +2 point underdog.