NFL free agency: Adrian Peterson wants to play for Texans

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The Texans are an ideal fit for Adrian Peterson, largely because Peterson calls Houston home, the free agent running back said Friday on Men’s New Orleans Saints Adrian Peterson Nike Black Player Pride Name & Number T-Shirt.

“It has always been my dream to come back home and play,” Peterson said. “Taken that I’ve been living in Houston for over a decade. That would be a perfect landing spot, here in my backyard. That would be very convenient.”

He is originally from Palestine, Texas, less than a three-hour drive from Houston.

Peterson, once one of the most dominant offensive players in the NFL, is clearly on the downside of his career. After spending his first 10 years in the league with the Vikings, he played for the Saints for four games last season before being traded to Arizona and playing six games for the Cardinals. He was released by Arizona this week.

Peterson turns 33 next week, an age at which it’s rare for a running back to be productive. He insists, though, he has “at least three to four” years left in the NFL.

“As far as my body and how I feel physically, I feel great,” he said Friday.

We’re sure the Texans are flattered by Peterson’s interest, but we doubt they’ll be clamoring to sign him. They have Lamar Miller and D’Onta Foreman under contract in their backfield, and running backs as long in tooth as Peterson aren’t at the top of many NFL team’s wish lists.

Adrian Peterson seems to have his eyes set on one potential landing spot for 2018

Less than 24 hours after being released by the Cardinals, it looks like Adrian Peterson already has his sights set one specific team that he wants to play for in 2018.

During an interview with TMZ this week, Peterson said he has a “dream scenario” for next season: playing for the Houston Texans. The 32-year-old running back, who turns 33 on March 21, was born and raised in the Lone Star State.

“Obviously, being back home would be awesome,” Peterson said, via TMZ. “Houston has always been a team I’ve thought about.”

Not only does Peterson live in Houston, but his mom also lives in the city, which is why he’s interested in signing with the Texans.

“Being back here at home where I work out every day,” Peterson said. “My family is here. My family is close. My mom is here. Being around her a little more during this time [in my life] would be even more a cherry on top.”

The only way this would even remotely have a chance of happening is if Peterson was willing to give the Texans a gigantic hometown discount. The Texans’ depth chart at running back currently consists of Lamar Miller and D’Onta Foreman in the top two spots, and they’re likely not going anywhere anytime soon. Freeman, who was a rookie in 2017, will definitely be on the roster in 2018.

As for Miller, it wouldn’t be crazy to see the Texans make a move with him, but for now, he’s under contract for the next two years after signing a four-year deal in 2016. That being said, if the Texans cut Miller right now, it would only cost them $2 million in salary cap space. Basically, Peterson would have to sign for cheap and be willing to split carries with Foreman for this to even have a chance of happening.

Even though he spent the 2017 season playing for both the Saints and the Cardinals, Peterson has clearly been keeping tabs on the Texans.

“The defense is incredible, obviously. Good division to be in,” Peterson said. “Good young quarterback, receivers, Hopkins! It’s a lot of talent there as well.”

If Peterson does sign a deal to play in 2018, don’t look for that to be his final season. Despite his age, the 2012 NFL MVP said in February that he plans to play until 2021 or 2022.

“I think I would want to play maybe four more years, four to five more years,” Peterson said, via the St. Paul Pioneer Press. “At the end of the day, I know I can play. If you watch football, as far as being an evaluator of talent, if a guy has something left in the tank, I feel like he was able to see that I can still play the game.”

Although Peterson led the NFL in rushing in 2015, he hasn’t done much since. Over the past two seasons, Peterson has only rushed for a total of 601 yards and two touchdowns in 13 games, while playing for the Cardinals, Saints and Vikings. However, Peterson did show flashes of brilliance in 2017, with two games where he rushed for more than 130 yards.

One thing that’s not clear is how healthy Peterson is. The running back missed the final five games of the 2017 season after being placed on injured reserve due to a neck injury. Peterson also missed a total of 13 games with the Vikings in 2016 due to injury.