Adrian Peterson wanted the work. And the Cardinals are happy to oblige. Whether he’s able to keep it up remains to be seen.
But the 32-year-old running back was grateful for the opportunity to set a new record.
Peterson carried the ball a career-high 37 times for 159 yards, as the Cardinals beat the 49ers 20-10.
“It felt good to get in there, get in the groove and keep pounding the rock,” Peterson said, via Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic. “I kind of felt like I was getting up there in the 30s, but I felt good, felt fresh, and the guys were doing a great job up front. It was like, ‘Whatever it takes to get this ‘W.’ ”
Now the challenge will be repeating it, on a short week, since they play the Seahawks Thursday night.
But in the absence of quarterback Carson Palmer, the Cardinals are willing to lean on Peterson, and give him the ball as much as possible.
“Ball’s not very heavy,” Cardinals coach Bruce Arians joked.
“He’s in unbelievable shape,” Arians added. “We’ll see how he feels Monday or Tuesday. I wish we had a full week. Obviously, we won’t be able to feed him that many times on Thursday night.”
Arians offered him a few snaps off, and Peterson took him up on it just once. But the reality for the Cardinals to have a chance against good teams, they’re going to need his ability to run consistently so Drew Stanton can throw play-action passes with confidence.