Former Vikings executive Jeff Diamond has some interesting thoughts about Adrian Peterson in a recent piece he wrote for Sporting News. Namely, he writes that he is still troubled by the ethical dilemma presented by Peterson’s off-field problems and he wonders if the running back’s performance this season is obscuring some tough questions and answers.
Much of it is a rehash of all that went wrong, but the most interesting part comes near the end when Diamond — the Vikings’ former VP and General Manager until he left to take a top job with the Titans in 1999 – talks about what he would have done in the offseason leading up to 2015:
“If I was in control and knew I could have received anything close to full value in a trade, I would have shipped Peterson to another team. Perhaps the Vikings did test the trade winds, but in this age of media-savvy team execs, internet and social media, it’s virtually impossible to keep such talks under the radar.
Had a deal been cut, maybe the Vikings wouldn’t be running the ball as well. Second-year quarterback Teddy Bridgewater likely would be under more pressure. But I, as a team exec, would sleep better knowing I sent a strong message to my team, my organization and my fan base about our expectations on and off the field.”
That’s a pretty strong statement, though it’s also much easier to say what you would have done than to be the one who actually has to make the decision.