With no real role in the New Orleans Saints backfield, Adrian Peterson has been traded to the Arizona Cardinals.
Before their Week 5 bye, the New Orleans Saints beat the Miami Dolphins 20-0 in London. Nursing a second half lead should have put Adrian Peterson in line for a solid workload, but he still played just six snaps in the game and finished with four yards on four carries.
Peterson has been an impeccably poor fit in New Orleans, with 81 yards on 27 carries over four games and still offering virtually nothing as a pass catcher (two catches for four yards) for a Drew Brees-led offense. Possible trade destinations became easy to offer after the London game, including a reunion with the Minnesota Vikings after they lost dynamic rookie running back Dalvin Cook to a torn ACL.
As they reset things a bit coming out of their bye week, the Saints have reportedly traded Peterson to the Arizona Cardinals.
The Cardinals are 2-3 after a Week 5 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles, and the loss of running back David Johnson in Week 1 has left them devoid of a running game. Carson Palmer has thrown the ball a league-high 227 times (45.4 per game), and taken a tied for league-most 19 sacks, while Arizona is tied for 28th in rushing attempts (100; 20 per game), last in yards per carry (2.6) and rushing yards per game (51.8) by a good margin.
Acquiring Peterson fits with a win-now mold in Arizona, as Palmer and wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald may be playing their final seasons. How realistic their playoff chances are is up in the air, but the Seattle Seahawks and Los Angeles Rams are both 3-2 and don’t appear likely to run way with things in the NFC West.
From a certain perspective, the Cardinals trading for Peterson seems to spell doom for Johnson’s chances to return from his wrist injury before the season ends. But more balance on offense is clearly needed, and Peterson should help that a bit.