EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. -- After walking a group of reporters through an hour-long, off-the-record study of some Minnesota Vikings film on Wednesday afternoon, coach Mike Zimmer took about 10 minutes of questions, in what is scheduled to be his last media availability before the start of organized team activities on May 26.
And in the two questions Zimmer received about Adrian Peterson, he made it clear the Vikings aren't all that worried about the situation affecting them adversely.
Zimmer would not discuss the conversations he'd had with Peterson, who hasn't been part of the team's offseason workouts so far and whose status is uncertain for the start of OTAs. Peterson typically hasn't attended this portion of the Vikings' offseason program even when he's been happy with the direction of the team, and Zimmer said he doesn't anticipate any issues should Peterson still be disgruntled if and when he shows up.
"There’s a lot of its and nuts and candies and buts there,” Zimmer said. “I don’t think there will be any issues, no.”
The Vikings have been consistent for months now about their desire to keep Peterson, and it makes no sense for them to give any credence to any negative ramifications that might result from Peterson being where they want him. But Zimmer did an admirable job quashing whatever distraction the Peterson situation might have been last year, and he doesn't seem concerned about the possibility of Peterson's return now.
In the end, the guess here is Peterson will be a hard worker and a good teammate if he winds up back in Minnesota this season; he has too much competitive fire and professional pride to loaf or fake injuries and he's been working out with the goal of reminding the league what made him great. The Vikings are banking on that outcome, too, and they might not be as adamant on keeping Peterson if they didn't believe things will be copacetic in the end. For now, it appears to be business as usual for the Vikings on the Peterson front.