Adrian Peterson says he wants to qualify for the Olympics

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Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson could be on the cusp of bringing home a lot of hardware for the remarkable season he’s put together coming off a torn ACL last year.

Peterson is among the favorites to win the most valuable player, offensive player of the year and comeback player of the year awards at season’s end. With one game to go in the regular season, Peterson has rushed for 1,898 yards and 11 touchdowns. Peterson needs 102 yards to become the seventh back in league history to reach the 2,000 yard plateau and 208 yards to catch Eric Dickerson for the single-season rushing record.

Yet Peterson may be seeking an even greater award down the road: an Olympic medal.

In an interview on In Depth with Graham Bensinger, Peterson said he wants to attempt to qualify for the 2016 Olympic Games in track. He hopes to join the likes of Bob Hayes, James Jett and Michael Bates as people able to play in the NFL and earn an Olympic medal.

Peterson said he was planning on making a run at the Olympics before he injured his knee last year. He had planned on running in a few track meets over the off-season to see how he felt running track again. Peterson said he wants to qualify for the Olympics in the 200- and 400-meter races.

“That’s a goal of mine that I want to accomplish,” Peterson said. “…Now that I’m back and refreshed, I think I’m going to give it a shot still.”

Peterson even feels he can take on Usain Bolt, the Jamaican sprinter who holds the world records in the 100- and 200-meter races.

“I feel like I can stand up to any challenge,” Peterson said. “I know a lot of people laugh and be like ‘come on, let’s be real with yourself.’ It’s Usain Bolt, but I feel like you can accomplish anything you put your mind to.”

Peterson said he’s thinking about attending the Penn Relays or another meet to “test the waters” and see how he fares against the competition.

While being able to beat Usain Bolt may be a wee bit far-fetched, the thought that he could make an Olympic team is not. After the recovery he’s had this year, it’s hard to say Adrian Peterson can’t do something that he puts his mind to.

119 responses to “Adrian Peterson says he wants to qualify for the Olympics

  1. Good luck to him. I don’t see him winning a medal against athletes who train solely for the track events, but as a Packer fan it would be nice to finally have him on our team.

    USA

  2. Usain Bolt now thats a little bit far fetched, Olympic track stars are a different ball game Adrian, stick with what you know.

  3. Would of been interesting watching him compete. I think by 2016 his body and age will start to take a toll. He’s not old by any means but he is a workhorse and his body is still taking a beating.

  4. I dont get this AP being a COMEBACK player. AP did not miss last season. Yes it is true he had a very bad injury and recovered faster than is humanly possible but I thought COMEBACK players were players who missed a season or most of a seasom due to being on IR. That is not AP. But then the Media can swing it any way it wants for those it likes and those it does not.

  5. Do you think if he wins MVP he’ll admit that he isn’t human in his acceptance speech? To be fair, I think only humans should be able to win MVP so my vote goes to Manning. Even though he resembles a distant cousin if Megamind.

  6. He is a remarkable athlete and it’s a nice goal/dream but I don’t think he has olympic/world class speed.

  7. He would probably have to work pretty hard on his acceleration for that to happen, but like the article says, if he puts his mind to it, I can’t see this being out of reach.

    This man is a true sportsman.

  8. I’m amazed on how well AP has been running this year. He’s a pure beast. An awesome HB, and a future HOFer.

    With that said, maybe he could qualify at track, but I see him more as a football player then a track guy.

    I could be wrong, but if he does qualify, good for him. I wish well.

  9. Peterson may be fast, but there’s a big difference speed on the football field and speed on the track. Plus, Peterson has had several years of having his legs pounded. Those other players mentioned were sprinters before entering into the NFL. Elite sprinters today would leave him in their dust.

  10. Ok. I am amazed by what Arian Peterson has done this season and he should be in the running for the MVP, but comeback player of the year?? He got injured week #16 last year – so he missed one game. Manning missed an entire season and there was a question as to IF he would play again. Yes, AP’s injury was severe and he made a remarkably quick recovery, but again he only missed ONE GAME.

    MVP – Toss up
    Comeback Player – Manning – hands down.

  11. So let me get this straight… Chris Johnson, who’s actually really fast, says something like this and the PFT reporters laugh at him… Adrian Peterson says pretty well the same thing and you guys talk it up like its a real possibility… WTF?

  12. I love the guy as a longtime Viking fan.. But as a track and field coach .. Please don’t embarrass yourself AP. There are kids running an indoor track meet this cold winter night that’ll never score a touchdown on tv, but have a better shot at making an Olympic team than you. Typical football player.. 200 and 400.. Looks so easy to them. They have no idea how how many kids,, and yes “kids” can beat them. But try AP.. I still love ya.

  13. AD, I love ya, but Bolt would blow past you like you were in reverse.

    We can start training by running past every gb defensive back, after that you can run track, bobsled, joust or take on any ram on our planet, but for now lets just gain yards.

    Wreck’em Adrian!

  14. Last week he says he can get 2500 yards rushing, this week he says he can take on Usain Bolt…I used to really like AP but he is starting to rub me the wrong way. Focus on getting your team to the playoffs dude, not individual accomplishments.

  15. Love AD he’s all heart all the time. He is every thing that is right with the nfl and football. But in a foot race jamal charles and cj the slasher rbs would beat him hands down

  16. I generally only watch the gymnastics and what little shooting they have, but I’d tune in to see him run. Rather see him in the Decathlon. He should get with the Cardshian’s Big Daddy. He would win every sprint and given a year to train, probably win long jump and could learn the rest. I see him taking Gold, not just be a spectator and run against Bolt.

    js

  17. Hmm, well I have never really pictured AD as a “speed” back, more of a guy who runs over you and then churns for another ten yards before he is finally gang tackled. That being said, sure he could still put over a lap on me by the time I could stumble 1/2 a lap.

    I sadly could see AD doing something like Herschel Walker did though with bobsledding where speed, strength, and coordination are all keys. Plus the Winter Olympics are coming in 18 months.

  18. AD= Always Dreaming

    The guy couldn’t outrun #37, Sam Shields, who plays CB for the Packers much less Usain Bolt, mon.

  19. I’ll just bet the Vikes will be THRILLED to hear he wants to put that kind of stress, strain and milage while training for The Gold, on his legs/body!!

  20. I wouldn’t put making an Olympic run past him, dude has proved he can do what he sets his mind too, also nice to see he is thinking realistic

  21. I’m sure the Vikings fans will bash me but it’s getting old hearing about A “ME” P. AP wants to reach 2000 yards, AP wants to break the record, AP wants to win the MVP, AP wants Comeback Player of the Year, AP wants to make the Olympics, AP wants a gold medal. Would be nice to see AP mention he wants to make the playoffs…

  22. AD was too embarrassed to admit the other thing he wanted to do…

    Cue Dan Fogleberg:

    And it’s run for the roses
    As fast as you can
    Your fate is delivered
    Your moment’s at hand
    It’s the chance of a lifetime
    In a lifetime of chance
    And it’s high time you joined
    In the dance

  23. His team is fighting for a playoff spot, and all this guy does is talk about individual records and personal goals? Someone needs to have a talk with Adrian Peterson.

  24. AD isn’t even among the fastest guys in the NFL let alone the fastest sprinters in the world. No chance he qualifies.

  25. Good for him. Every team would kill to have a guy with his kind of talent and that kind of drive on their team. He is just a remarkable football player…it’s hard not to like him.

  26. I hope the man gets it done he is fast and I really want to see him break the record against the the snakers

  27. To strive for a Gold Medal is amazing…but the extra wear-&-hopefully-not-tear on the knees during such a grueling Olympic training regimen may end-up shortening his career as an elite running-back.

  28. good to see he is more concerned with more personal stats and himself than actually making the playoffs. seems that he and only he alone matters , not a shocking development here

  29. I love the way Adrian Peterson plays football. But just because you are an amazing running back doesn’t mean that you can beat the fastest man to ever live in a race.

  30. Mighty full of himself. AD seems to be soaking up all the idolization. I’d rather he be focused on the game and not how great “they” all say he is.

  31. They all think that until they line up and get a beat down by world class sprinters. I’d bet anyone reading this he couldn’t beat Chris Johnson in the 200 and he’s too muscular to run the 400. DeSean Jackson would beat him in both events.

    Cool story AD. Now stick to running it down teams throats bro.

  32. Peterson will be 31 when the Olympics roll around again. Not sure how fast he will be at that point. More power to him, though.

  33. He got caught from behind several times this year. As much as I like him, I think his self-confidence might have edged over into delusional territory.

  34. Good look all day Peterson, a true inspiration to many suffering from adversity, as a Cowboy fan, I applaud your will and determination and hope many athletes strive to admire your heart.

  35. Realistic self-confidence is admirable, otherwise it’s called boasting. I think Peterson is the real deal. I hope he is at least able to give it a shot.

  36. Peterson is an exceptional athlete no doubt…but most olympic athletes don’t tear their MCL and although he recovered from it to perform great at his current profession, what effect will it have in 4 years? Not to mention the other beatings his body will endure? First it was Dickerson now Bolt? Will Peterson also be announcing his run at POTUS in the near future?

  37. Dickerson got his record in 14 games, unlike the 16 games AP is running against. Lets say ED got another 200 yds for games 15 and 16, Peterson would need another 410 yds. If he breaks ED’s record, there should be an asterisk

  38. It’s not that hard for me to think Adrian isn’t going to be able to qualify for the Olympics at 31 years old. Football and track are mildly related, but so are writing for a football blog and becoming a poet laureate.

  39. This guy needs to stop, he sounds exactly like Chris Johnson before he started to suck. One thing at a time Adrian. You could learn something valuable from how Jamaal Charles adresses the media. With class and always humble.

  40. I am not saying I think he can do it but I am definately not betting against Adrian Peterson anytime soon. This guy is Impressive and that is an understatement.

  41. You have to carry too much weight as an NFL running back to transit to track anymore.

    Bob Hayes was 5’11” 185. James Jett was 5’10” 170.

    Bolt is 6’5″ 190. A muscular beanpole.

    Peterson is listed at 6’1″ 217. He would have to carry a lot of mass in a track race. Helpful in the NFL, but a big hindrance in track. Or drop a lot of weight…

  42. This is one athlete that I do not doubt. If it’s a goal of his, he will probably do it. It has been fun watching him this season.

  43. Two great, but very different athletes. I doubt AP can run a consistent 9.90s 100m, let alone be in the same frame as Usain Bolt. The converse is that I don’t see Bolt busting through NFL level talent, breaking tackles, cutback vision, etc. that make AP great.

    Maybe he would be better on the bobsled. Herschel Walker did that I believe.

  44. I’d like to see a group of the fastest NFL player and see how they do as a relay team in a Olympic track competition. Adrian Peterson, Chris Johnson, Mike Wallace, Jamaal Charles/DeSean Jackson?

    It would definitely be fun to watch.

  45. Usain Bolt? C’mon Adrian did you fall and bump your head? Bolt is untouchable. You may be fast but not U.B. fast.

  46. As far as I can tell, and I could be wrong, his HS bests are 10.66 and 21.69. Fast yes but there are legions of guys that ran those times in HS and never went anywhere.

  47. packerfaninsandiego says:Dec 30, 2012 7:29 AM

    Dickerson got his record in 14 games, unlike the 16 games AP is running against. Lets say ED got another 200 yds for games 15 and 16, Peterson would need another 410 yds. If he breaks ED’s record, there should be an asterisk

    Do some research idiot. It was a 16 game schedule for Dickerson as well. The glaring difference is Dickerson fumbled 14 times in his record breaking season. That is more than Adrian has fumbled in the last 4 seasons.

  48. ame123 says: Dec 30, 2012 12:36 AM

    I think we’re looking at the best RB in the history of the NFL in his prime right now.

    Uhhh…..NO. That would be Emmitt Smith. Numbers don’t lie.

  49. I like Adrian Peterson. He is a great athlete. However, there is no way he would qualify for the Olympics. These guys train solely to run sprints.

  50. The other big issue, is the guys he mentioned did the Olympics before they ever played a NFL game. AP better be ready to not play NFL in 2015. He has to train pretty much all of 2015, just to get ready for the trials in June of 16.

  51. AP is great .. and he _is_ really fast .. but how come football players (like CJ2K) don’t seem to understand that track at the Olympics level is a whole different breed of fast?

    Usain Bolt and his teammate J Blake got speed that can even rival some 4-legged animals .. common NFL’ers .. stop talking crazy.

  52. Hey, the dude is only 26 years old, let him have his dream, don’t any of you guys remember how dunb we were at 26??????????

  53. Finally, a race he can’t lose to the Packers.

    ———————————————————

    Actually, I think he’s been using the Packers defense to train for the 400 between his two games against the Pack.

  54. rainger says: Dec 30, 2012 12:32 AM

    “I dont get this AP being a COMEBACK player. AP did not miss last season. Yes it is true he had a very bad injury and recovered faster than is humanly possible but I thought COMEBACK players were players who missed a season or most of a seasom due to being on IR. That is not AP. But then the Media can swing it any way it wants for those it likes and those it does not.”
    ———————————————————–
    You don’t get it??? What are you; retarded?

  55. mikellie says: Dec 30, 2012 9:48 AM

    ame123 says: Dec 30, 2012 12:36 AM

    I think we’re looking at the best RB in the history of the NFL in his prime right now.

    Uhhh…..NO. That would be Emmitt Smith. Numbers don’t lie.
    ————————————————————
    Aaaah… NO. That’s really stupid. ONE number doesn’t dictate the overall. Just… Wow. Barry Sanders retired very early, and everyone I know believes he’s hands down the best ever. Numbers- schmumbers, you clown. Many, MANY people still believe Jim Brown is #1 or 2- leaving Emmit at #3- IF that!! And after watching this last season, I think everyone is re-evaluating the top few. And tons of people who’ve been watching the NFL for 48 years (like me) are thinking AP is quite possibly the GOAT.

  56. bcjim says: Dec 30, 2012 8:41 AM

    “As far as I can tell, and I could be wrong, his HS bests are 10.66 and 21.69. Fast yes but there are legions of guys that ran those times in HS and never went anywhere.”
    ————————————————————
    You ever hear of improving? Training? Learning technique- that you weren’t privy to in your dumb HS? You think perhaps Usain Bolt ran faster when he was in HS? Child, puh-lease.

  57. i give him a very good chance at getting a medal, a lot of people don’t know if he didn’t pursue his NFl dream he could’ve become the next Track Superstar, so to all you people that think he has no clue what he’s getting into he does

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