It’s already been a tough week for Vikings running back Adrian Peterson. After all, he does share a locker room with five Notre Dame players all still gloating over the Fighting Irish’s 30-13 Saturday blowout of Oklahoma.
“Rough week for me,” Peterson said, “and for my pockets. It is what it is.”
Now, Peterson faces another big challenge with this weekend’s game in Seattle. The Seahawks defense ranks fifth in the league right now against the run. The top backs from their first eight opponents have averaged just 47 yards. And San Francisco’s Frank Gore (16 carries, 131 yards in Week 7) is the only back to top 60 yards against Seattle.
Peterson called the Seahawks defense “stout” and “aggressive.” But he also feels like he’s in a groove, currently the NFL’s leading rusher and coming off consecutive 100-yard games against Arizona and Tampa Bay.
“Each week I’m improving, getting better,” Peterson said. “I wouldn’t sit here and say [I’m] back in a groove. I feel like I’ve been in a groove the entire season so far.”
The rushing lead is something Peterson is proud of but doesn’t overvalue – especially at this stage of the season.
“I’ve said all the time, when I worked during the offseason, I work to be the best,” he said. “So I take a lot of pride in it. But it’s still a long season. I’m not focusing on that. I’m just now the leading rusher. The seven weeks before that, I wasn’t. So it’s not that big of a deal. It’s all about how you finish up.”
Always the optimist, Peterson is raising the bar for what he can accomplish as he continues to improve.
“I’m doing what I’ve got to do to help my team succeed. That’s rushing for 100 yards, 80 yards, 60 yards receiving. Three-hundred yards rushing, I’m going to try to get it done.”
Really, Adrian? Three-hundred yards?
“Yeah, yeah,” Peterson affirmed. “It’s possible. Come on now. You know that.”