Fantasy Football 2015: Previewing the Minnesota Vikings

2 of 5

Adrian Peterson, RB

Sep 7, 2014; St. Louis, MO, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson (28) looks on during the second half against the St. Louis Rams at the Edward Jones Dome. The Vikings defeated the Rams 34-6. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

All who follow the NFL closely know about the situation AP found himself in during the 2014 season.  Considering the media attention it received, just about everybody else around the world — regardless if they follow sports in any capacity — probably knew about it as well.  This isn’t the forum to discuss that, however, so we’ll keep it strictly to fantasy football.

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, the first question that needs asking is: do you take Peterson with the first overall pick in your draft?  Any mock draft worth it’s salt has one of several top RBs going as the first choice off the board, but the selection varies from analyst-to-analyst.

Between Le’Veon Bell, Marshawn Lynch, Eddie Lacy, Jamaal Charles and AP — could you really go wrong there?  That’s not even including Arian Foster, C.J. Anderson, DeMarco Murray and our very own Matt Forte.  The latter four are considered by some to be just as viable and the beauty of fantasy football is, you never really know.

Sep 7, 2014; St. Louis, MO, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson (28) carries the ball against the St. Louis Rams during the first half at the Edward Jones Dome. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Despite Peterson’s absence for the vast majority of 2014, the Vikings as a team still accounted for the 14th-most rushing yards in the NFL.  Matt Asiata emerged as a solid waiver-wire pickup for fantasy owners and ended the season with legitimate RB2 numbers.

The guy I affectionately referred to as “Asiata Cheese” provided some fantasy punch for me when I needed it, going off for a couple of 3-TD performances during the year.  Explosive rookie Jerick McKinnon showed flashes and he, more so than the plodding Asiata, was tabbed as the heir apparent in the Viking backfield while Peterson’s future hung in the balance.

On to 2015 and Peterson is back, ready to assume his throne as the top RB in the FF game.  It’s hard not to worry a little about how a year away possibly impacts his effectiveness or susceptibility to injury, but he’s a special kind of athlete that might just come back better than ever.

Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it, so for me — I would probably choose one of the other top RBs with my first selection in the off-chance that Peterson has any hiccups (physical or legal) in his return.  Peterson is without a doubt an RB1 and potential Fantasy Football MVP material, so if you’re a believer that he comes back as the same guy he was before missing a year — take him with your top pick.

Next: Sophomore On the Rise