Washington OC Scott Turner envisions key role for Adrian Peterson
The Washington Redskins currently boast a crowded running backs room thanks to some offseason moves, but that doesn’t mean Adrian Peterson won’t play a key role in the offense next season.
Washington picked up Peterson’s option for the 2020 season, which comes with a $2.25 million base salary. Speaking to reporters Wednesday, Redskins offensive coordinator Scott Turner indicated the team has plans for Peterson in 2020, which include utilizing the veteran back beyond a traditional first-and-second-down role.
On Adrian Peterson, Scott Turner said there’s a role for him even if he’s more a first-second down back. Helps with check downs; also this is a play-action based offense so he helps set that up.— John Keim (@john_keim) May 27, 2020
Heading into this offseason, Peterson was already facing competition for carries from the likes of Derrius Guice and Bryce Love. Then, Washington signed Peyton Barber to a two-year deal. In April, the team further crowded its backfield by selecting former Memphis standout back Antonio Gibson in the third round of the 2020 NFL Draft.
In a 2019 campaign during his age-34 season, the seemingly ageless Peterson appeared in 15 games and rushed for 898 yards on 211 attempts, good for a 4.3-yard-per-carry average.
It remains to be seen how much gas Peterson has left in the tank, but there’s no reason to expect his production to fall off completely given his tireless work ethic, rigorous offseason workout regimen and drive to prove his doubters wrong. It also stands to reason that Peterson could serve as a valuable mentor to Gibson, not to mention the other running backs on the roster.
That being said, Washington could clear almost $2.5 million in salary cap space by cutting Peterson while only taking a $750,000 dead money hit.
It remains to be seen whether Peterson is ultimately in Washington’s plans in 2020 in light of their recent offseason moves, but Turner’s comments seemingly suggest that will be the case.