Adrian Peterson created a stir last offseason when he skipped the Vikings' mandatory three-day minicamp so he could be in attendance at the annual day thrown in his honor in his hometown of Palestine, Texas.
The NFL lockout left Peterson in no jeopardy of upsetting the Vikings again this spring by skipping out on any activities. However, it appears scheduling issues will cause Peterson to miss at least one event where lots of people expected to see him.
The former Oklahoma star was supposed to host his own youth football camp on Thursday and Friday in Norman, Okla., but it turns out Peterson will not attend because he will be part of a taping of a show that is counting down the NFL Network's Top 100 current players.
The website for the camp -- which is for boys' and girls' ages 7 to 14 and costs $199 -- posted a message explaining why the Pro Bowl running back would be absent.
"Adrian Peterson is being featured on the NFL Top 100 program and will not be able to attend this week’s camp," the statement read. "Although we are saddened to hear that he won’t be able to attend his camp, we congratulate Adrian on the honor. Since we learned the news, ProCamps has been working around the clock to maintain a program that still provides a first-class experience to all campers and allows interaction with various Sooner stars. All-time Sooner greats Mark Clayton, DeMarco Murray and Jason White will serve as special guest hosts at camp."
For a superstar athlete, my belief is that Peterson is a pretty amicable guy and rarely, if ever, seems to cop an attitude. But it is decisions like this that you have to question -- and keep in mind, Peterson could be getting advice from others.
We posted a blog last week on the NFL Network's Top 100 list and where Peterson might rank. But no matter where he ends up, one has to wonder if it's worth the negative press he could get from skipping out on a youth camp that has his name attached to it. You would think if Peterson told NFL Network they would have to wait until he was available that it would have gone along with that.
Peterson already caused a major stir in March when he compared the league's labor situation to slavery in an interview with Yahoo! Sports. To the best of my knowledge, Peterson has not addressed those comments since he made them and he was not asked about them during an appearance on ESPN last week.
In fairness to Peterson, when those comments were published he was traveling to Africa as part of a Starkey Hearing Foundation mission.
That trip was among the good things Peterson does off the field. But skipping this camp isn't going to help him from a public relations standpoint.