“If he’s not traded next week, they’re going to keep him,” the source said.
All indications from the Vikings have been that they plan to keep him. However, Tomasson‘s source mentioned that Minnesota won’t have more leverage than during the upcoming draft.
Once the top-two running backs — Melvin Gordon and Todd Gurley — are off the board, the Vikings could make some phone calls to gauge the market for Peterson.
Tomasson‘s source listed the Cardinals, Falcons, Cowboys, Jaguars, Chargers, and Buccaneers as teams that could have interest in a potential trade for Peterson.
As for what the Vikings could in return for Peterson, sources have told Tomasson that Minnesota would be lucky to come away with a late first-round pick for him.
“If they got a second-round pick and a player, they’d be doing well,” the source said.
Earlier in the day, Jason Cole mentioned that in the event that the Vikings want to “repair” the situation with Peterson, they could guarantee most the remaining money in his contract and he would “happily” report to offseason workouts.
Peterson, 30, still has another three years remaining on his seven-year, $96 million contract that included $36 million guaranteed. Over the next three years, Peterson stands to make base salaries of $12.75 million (2015), $14.75 million (2016), and $16.75 million (2017).
As for his cap figures, the Vikings are looking at $15.4 million (2015), $15 million (2016), and $17 million (2017).
According to OverTheCap.com, trading Peterson would free up $13 million in available cap space and create $2.4 million dead money.
Peterson appeared in just one game for the Vikings and ran for 75 yards on 21 carries (3.6 YPC) while adding two receptions for 18 yards receiving and no touchdowns.