Early in the fall, Adrian Peterson's phone was ringing.
There were football teams checking on the future Hall of Fame veteran who was still a free agent. And then there were the non-football calls.
According to agent Ron Slavin of SportStars, while Peterson was training in an attempt to play a 15th season, a representative from Dancing with the Stars reached out to the running back about a possible stint on the show. One of the most popular shows on TV, Dancing with the Stars would have been something Peterson considered.
But it was early in September, and Peterson still wanted to play. While the producers would have allowed him to leave the live fall show (which began in late September) for the NFL if he ended up signing, he wanted his full attention to be on the field.
So, Peterson turned down the chance and kept training.
All of that pays off tonight as he takes the field for Titans-Rams as part of a group taking the place of injured superstar running back Derrick Henry.
"I feel good," Peterson said after a practice this week. "If they call my number, I'm going to go out there and contribute any way that I can. I do a great job of keeping myself prepared for a moment like this."
The stint on Dancing with the Stars likely would have earned Peterson several hundred thousand dollars.
Peterson initially signed to the practice squad, but was elevated to the 53-man on Friday. He worked out for the team on Monday, and he was signed immediately. After diving into the playbook, he impressed enough where he's expected to be active tonight.
"You think of an ideal situation for a running back like me and my style, it would be this right now," Peterson told reporters. "I'm going to do whatever they ask me to do."
For the seven-time Pro Bowler and four-time All-Pro, Dancing with the Stars can wait. Perhaps if he ever retires.
For now, it's about filling in for Henry, who had foot surgery Tuesday and is out 6-10 weeks. Tennessee leads the Colts by 2.5 games in the AFC South, and if the Titans can keep it rolling until the playoffs, Henry has a real chance to return.
For now, among the other backs, it's about Peterson.
"He certainly knows how to run the football. He's done it for a long time, he's done it at a high level," GM Jon Robinson told the team’s website. "We reached out to him and he was fired up about the opportunity. We worked him out, he looked great, was in great shape and we just felt like he really fit our style of football and the way we want to play."