Vikings General Manager Rick Spielman says he’s alarmed by the case against running back Adrian Peterson, but he stands by the team’s decision to allow Peterson to continue playing.
Spielman said he has seen the widely circulated photos of Peterson’s son, who suffered cuts and bruises when Peterson hit him with a switch. Spielman acknowledged being disturbed by those pictures, but he still thinks the Vikings should keep playing Peterson, who has been indicted for injury to a child, until the legal process plays out.
“The photos are disturbing, I understand that. But to be clear, any matter that’s involving the child is very important to our organization, but we also think it is right for him to go through the process legally,” Spielman said.
Asked if the Vikings are standing by Peterson only because he’s a great player, Spielman insisted that’s not he case.
“It has nothing to do with him as a football player. It’s based purely on the facts that we have, that have been presented to us,” Spielman said. “It has nothing to do with that. It has to do with the information we have gathered.”
Spielman said the team has been gathering information about the case, but what makes the Peterson case different from most other criminal cases is that there are few if any facts in dispute: Peterson has already admitted that he hit his son and inflicted those “disturbing” injuries. The Vikings know what Peterson did, and are choosing to play him anyway.