Sep 17, 2014 8:04 PM

Minnesota Vikings send Adrian Peterson home to deal with abuse charhe

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. – Minnesota Vikings star running back Adrian Peterson was declared out, back in, then out again as he faces a felony child-abuse charge in Texas. This time, he could be gone for the season. “We made a mistake,” Vikings owner Zygi Wilf said, “and we needed to get this right.” Vikings executives emerged Wednesday from a late-night deliberation to voice regret of their initial decision to let Peterson play this week after sitting him for a game once he was charged with injuring his 4-year-old son by spanking him with a wooden switch. Now Peterson is back on paid leave through a special roster exemption granted by the NFL, the same protocol cited by the Carolina Panthers as they sat defensive end Greg Hardy a few hours later while he deals with his own domestic violence case. “We will support Adrian during this legal and personal process, but we firmly believe this is the right decision,” said Wilf, the team’s co-owner with younger brother Mark Wilf. During a 17-minute news conference at Vikings headquarters, the word “right” was used a total of 34 times by the Wilfs, vice president Kevin Warren and general manager Rick Spielman. They expressed concern about child welfare, recognized their role as public figures and reminded the audience of the community service work done regularly by players. The most emphatic responses, though, came to questions from reporters about external pressure. Did the NFL strong-arm the decision? Did the loss of sponsorships drive it? “Absolutely not,” Mark Wilf, the team president, said on both subjects. He added: “We appreciate our fans, men and women alike, our sponsors and the community.


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