When the Vikings put Adrian Peterson on the Exempt List and his attorney, Rusty Hardin, made it clear the superstar running back intended to go to trial, it appeared Peterson's season had ended early.
But reports from ESPN and Pro Football Talk this weekend said that Peterson may reach a plea bargain as early as Tuesday and that the agreement would reduce the pending felony child-abuse charges to a misdemeanor.
If that's the case, it's not unthinkable that Peterson could return and play for the Vikings this season.
Here's what head coach Mike Zimmer had to say Monday when a reporter asked him about the situation:
"You sound like a coach with all those 'what ifs' in there," Zimmer said. "You know, I only go by what I see. Adrian has always been great with me. He's been top-notch, first-class, did everything I asked him to do. I'm not going to speculate on what happens, 'if' and 'when' and all this. When and if it happens then I'll be glad to talk to you about it."
ESPN's Chris Mortensen said it's "very possible" Peterson plays again with the Vikings this season, though he'll have to be reinstated by the league and the team would have to welcome him back. According to Mortensen, the team has been "softening" its stance towards their controversial running back. We still believe it's unlikely that Peterson plays, but owners with room on the bench may want to stash Peterson in case the chips fall into place. Remember, Mortensen isn't infallible. While the Josh Gordon saga was going on, he said that the chances of Gordon being fully reinstated were "100 percent." That obviously didn't happen.