While the New York Giants are still relishing their Super Bowl victory, the Minnesota Vikings still must be reeling from a disastrous season. Not only was the Donovan McNabb experiment a huge failure but the Vikings also lost their star running back, Adrian Peterson, to a knee injury in Week 16. Not only did Vikings fans have to suffer through a horrific season but they also lost their franchise back to a career-threatening injury in the process.
Peterson is about as big of a physical marvel as you can find in the NFL and he has already aggressively begun rehab work on his knee, but the Vikings should look at NFL history before relying too heavily on AP in 2012. Whether it is Ronnie Brown, Edgerrin James, or Terrell Davis, running backs that suffer an ACL injury are nowhere near as effective in their first year back on the field.
Peterson has been the only running back who has been a lock to be picked in the top 5 in your fantasy draft each of the last 4 seasons, what should you do in 2012? Let him sit until the 4th round. As crazy at it sounds, Peterson, assuming he is ready for the season opener which is a huge assumption, will most likely be a shell of himself as he adjusts to playing with a reconstructed knee. He very well might be totally healthy but the apprehension concerning his knee will keep him from being the dominant force we are accustomed to seeing. In fact, Toby Gerhart should be a better option than AP in your 2012 league.
After suffering so much in 2011, it is tough for Vikings fans to prepare themselves for these circumstances, but 2012, will most likely be another down year for both the team and its marquee player.