Adrian Peterson said on Monday that he has started to think about the possibility of becoming a coach somewhere in the future after some recent conversations with Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll.
But even if Peterson is willing to entertain that idea eventually, Peterson still wants to keep playing himself right now.
“I just can’t fathom my career ending the way that it did,” said Peterson, who appeared in just one game for Seattle before a back injury ended his season.. “So with that, I’m going into the offseason with the mindset to continue to play. I still have love for the game. I feel I can compete at a high level still and with an offseason under my belt, with the mindset — because I’m stronger than I was last year, mentally — with the mindset that I would go into this offseason with, I feel like I’ll be able to do some incredible things, getting healthy and just kind of grinding this offseason with a different mentality. So as of today, I definitely look forward to playing again.”
Peterson had 11 carries for 16 yards and a touchdown in his lone game in Seattle against the San Francisco 49ers. He was signed due to a roster pinch with Chris Carson out of the season, Alex Collins dealing with an abdominal injury and COVID-19, and Rashaad Penny just getting back from a hamstring injury.
But it was Peterson’s impact on Penny that ahead of his breakout end to the season that sparked the idea of Peterson as a coach.
Penny gave credit to Peterson for helping him refine his approach and mindset. He then rushed for over 130 yards in four of the final five games of the season for Seattle with six touchdowns and a career-high 190 yards against the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday.
“It was just a blessing to see,” Peterson said of Penny. “It really hit me after about two weeks. Like, ‘you probably won’t be able to get back out there.’ It was just refreshing to know that you made an impact in a different way.”
That effect on Penny and his investment in a team that he played in just one game for helped lead Carroll to ask Peterson about whether it’s something he wants to do eventually.
“The funny thing is I never really envisioned myself coaching. Not on this level or the college level. Maybe like my son’s little league team or something,” Peterson said. “But after talking to Coach Pete, it’s something I’ve kind of been thinking about. I talked to my wife as well and she was like, ‘Adrian, you are just a different person when you’re around football and it shows. So it’s something you really should think about and consider.’ So for the first time I’ve actually thought about it and considered going in that direction if and when I’m done playing football. So we’ll see where the chips fall.”
But that will come after Peterson’s playing career is officially over. And at least for now, Peterson is hoping that next chance is still out there.