Minnesota Vikings’ Adrian Peterson: Is He The Next Barry Sanders or Walter Payton?

November 7, 2010   ·     ·   Jump to comments

Adrian Peterson is currently leading the NFL in rushing yards.
There are many rankings that have Peterson as the best back in the NFL, and he has certainly been the one (and perhaps only) bright spot on a dismal 2010 season for the Minnesota Vikings. 
The division the Vikings play in has had the opportunity to defend against two of the best running backs in the league at least two times a year—Walter Payton of the Chicago Bears, and Barry Sanders of the Detroit Lions.
Comparing the careers of these great running backs to that of Peterson's reveals some very interesting coincidences.
In their rookie season, none of their respective teams had a winning record, but by their third season all three teams would win their division.
Incredibly, the Lions in 1991 would have the same record as the Vikings in 2009—12-4!
The Lions would win the division, defeat the Cowboys in the playoffs, and eventually lose the NFC championship game on the road. Th...

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