We've almost made it. The 2017 NFL season is days away.
With the New England Patriots set to kick off the season against the Kansas City Chiefs on Thursday, and most teams playing a week from today, we've hit our last football-free Sunday until the calendar turns to 2018.
One of the most highly anticipated matchups of Week 1 will be the Monday Night Football tilt between the New Orleans Saints and Minnesota Vikings. The return of Adrian Peterson to the land he ruled for a decade.
In an interview with Mark Craig of the Minneapolis Star Tribune this week, Peterson didn't downplay facing his former team to start the season.
"In my mind, we're starting and ending the season in Minnesota," Peterson said, referring to Super Bowl LII being played in Minneapolis. "Of course I want to stick it to them. I want to stick it to everyone we play. But going back to Minnesota, playing the Vikings? Yeah, I want to stick it to them."
Peterson played in just three games last season while dealing with injuries. In the brief time he did see the field, the 32-year-old struggled behind a porous offensive line. He averaged 1.9 yards per carry on 37 totes.
The veteran running back told Craig it was "obvious" he and the team needed a split. Peterson added that he's not upset when he hears the Vikings talking about rookie Dalvin Cook being a better fit for the offense, as a multi-dimensional back.
"Whatever floats their boat," Peterson said. "Teams run different styles of offense. The Saints are a dominant pass team. But they're trying to be more balanced, so Sean [Payton] pursued me. I know what I can do. Whatever Minnesota feels like will advance them, they should go for it. I am."
Sharing the backfield in New Orleans could help elongate Peterson's career and keep him fresh down the stretch in 2017. But there is no question he'd enjoy getting the bulk of the carries Week 1 and shoving it down the throat of his former teammates.