NFL

Adrian Peterson set to become NFL free agent

Sept. 18, 2016: Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson carries the ball during the first half of an NFL football game against the Green Bay Packers in Minneapolis

Sept. 18, 2016: Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson carries the ball during the first half of an NFL football game against the Green Bay Packers in Minneapolis  (AP/File)

The Minnesota Vikings have had the same running back for the better part of the past decade, but a change could be on the horizon. The team announced on Tuesday that it will not pick up Adrian Peterson’s option for 2017, making him a free agent next week.

“Adrian is an important part of the Minnesota Vikings organization,” said Vikings General Manager Rick Spielman. “We will continue to have conversations with his representatives and leave our future options open while determining what is best for both parties moving forward.”

Peterson was set to make $18 million next season if the Vikings had picked up his option, keeping him as the highest-paid running back in the NFL. At 31 years old and coming off of a season in which he played just three games, the Vikings clearly felt they would better themselves by opening up cap space.

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He’s played just one full season the past four years, including two seasons in which he played fewer than four games. In 2015, he rushed for 1,485 yards and 11 touchdowns.

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