Originally posted on Football Nation  |  Last updated 8/17/12
Anyone reading this article, or any on Footballnation.com for that matter, shouldn't have to be reminded that football is a contact sport.  However, it looks as though that's exactly what the Minnesota Vikings organization seems to be overlooking when it comes to their top running back, Adrian Peterson. 

Minnesota Star Tribune sports reporter Dan Wiederer broke the news with the following tweet: "(Defensive back) Jamarca Sanford on orders given to the D about Adrian Peterson: "The rules are simple.  Do not touch (number) 28.  If you touch him, you're cut.""

Yes, you read that correctly, cut.  Now, it's understandable that the Vikings want to protect their most valuable asset who accounted for 970 yards and 12 TDs last season, even after being hobbled by an ankle injury and missing three games.

It's also logical that the coaching staff is being hyper-vigilant after Peterson's devastating knee injury in game 16 of last year that tore both the ACL and MCL ligaments in his knee. 

Still, it's tough to fathom Minnesota announcing such a blanket edict restricting the rest of the team.  It seems obvious that if they want Peterson to remain healthy until the regular season, they need only keep him out of any situation where contact might occur.  After all, it's not like Peterson is likely to forget how to properly take a hand-off or hit the hole.  Even with no contact, he should be able to shake off the rust pretty quickly, and let's be honest, Peterson's knee will likely be a target come the regular season anyway.

What's more concerning though, is the fact that the Vikings are essentially broadcasting a major vulnerability.  The NFL is a billion dollar business, and like any other, is susceptible to unethical behavior on behalf of a few bad apples.  Look at the New England Patriots film scandal and the New Orleans Saints "Bountygate" if you don't believe questionable behavior exists in the NFL. 

Is it too far-fetched then to believe some guy on the Vikings' roster, who knows he's not going to make the cut anyway, might be tempted to take cash or other enticements from another team in the division to ensure Peterson never takes the field?  Sure, it might seem reminiscent of "The X-Files," or a bit like one of the numerous JFK conspiracy theories, but remember, something similar happened to Olympic ice skater Nancy Kerrigan in 1994.  She was assaulted with a collapsible baton by her rival Tonya Harding's husband.

Now the Vikings weren't exactly gold-medal contenders last year when they finished a deplorable 3-13, so it's unlikely that kind of scenario would really occur. Regardless, if it was the Green Bay Packers, the New England Patriots or most other NFL teams, it stands to reason that the whole situation might have been handled with a little more intelligence and a lot more discretion. 

Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Soccer player terminates contract after being attacked by stray dogs

Todd Bowles confirms Ryan Fitzpatrick is Jets starting QB: ‘It’s his job’

Carmelo Anthony shocked Dwyane Wade left Miami for Chicago

Report: David Lee signs with the Spurs

Craig Sager to miss Olympics while undergoing bone marrow transplant


Jarryd Hayne wouldn’t have retired if NFL had minor league system

Draymond Green: ‘Me and LeBron are friends’

Pierre-Paul won't need to wear club on hand this season

Report: Four cities remain in contention to host 2017 NBA ASG

Doc Rivers: Clippers have plan to let Paul Pierce retire as a Celtic

Another young 49er, Kaleb Ramsey, retires from NFL

Everything that's already gone wrong at the Rio Olympics

Hue Jackson: Browns will give Josh Gordon a fresh start

Diamondbacks nearing Daniel Hudson trade

Amar'e Stoudemire's presence (and absence) changed the NBA

What would George Costanza have traded to get Bonds and Griffey?

Gabby Douglas can make USA Gymnastics history at Olympics

Week 3 will determine the Big Ten's reputation this season

Cam Talbot thinks the Oilers are close to making the playoffs

The new era of WWE SmackDown has liftoff

Vlade Divac: Cousins ‘most dominant player in the world’

Wild offer to make Prince's 'Let's Go Crazy' new goal song

Canucks don't dismiss acquiring player with past issues

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Everything that's already gone wrong at the Rio Olympics

Amar'e Stoudemire's presence (and absence) changed the NBA

We asked Team USA: What other Olympic sport would you play?

Why Gary Bettman's CTE denial is cause for concern for NHL

WATCH: Inside the Nike SNKRS BOX in SF for Golden Air Celebration

WATCH: Five other uniforms Chris Sale should cut up

QUIZ: Name every Olympic event in which the USA has never won a gold medal

Five U.S. Olympians favored to win multiple gold medals

WATCH: What teams should join the Big 12?

One Gotta Go: Do NBA players really love NBA2K?

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker