Latavius Murray explains why he won't wear No. 28 for the Vikings

The Minnesota Vikings filled the gaping hole left by Adrian Peterson on Thursday, signing Latavius Murray to a three-year deal. The former Raiders running back isn't a seven-time Pro Bowler or former league MVP, but he is a solid player and should bring a spark to Minnesota's anemic running game.

What he won't do is replace Peterson. Not with his statistics, and certainly not with his jersey number. Murray made that clear in his heartfelt message to Vikings fans, saying he never even thought to don the No. 28 -- his number with Oakland -- in purple and gold.

There wasn't a thought in my mind to try and wear or ask for the #28. I have too much respect for AP and so much respect for what he's done and what he means to this organization. Many people don't know, but I wore the #28 as a kid because of Fred Taylor who played for the Jaguars at the time. When AP came onto the scene and Fred retired, he was my reason for keeping #28. I want to say to Vikings fans: I'm not here to replace #28, he's irreplaceable. I'm not here to be #28, there's no one like him. I ask that you accept me for the player I am and know that I'm here to give you all I got and to win #skol

A post shared by Latavius Murray (@lataviusmurray) on

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In the post, Murray says he wore 28 to honor longtime former Jaguars running back Fred Taylor. However, when he retired, Murray stuck with the number for Peterson, who was the best back in football at the time.

Murray doesn't want Vikings fans to think he's coming into Minnesota trying to replace Peterson, because no one can do that. He's simply trying to be the best player he can be for his new team.