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Report: Peterson likely to be reinstated; could play final 3 games

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If Peter King is right, Adrian Peterson could be taking handoffs from Teddy Bridgewater as soon as next week when the Vikings play the Lions in Detroit.

Here's King's Friday report from MMQB, where he notes that he's not certain Peterson will be reinstated.

"With Peterson likely (but not certain) to be reinstated by a league appeals officer, Harold Henderson, next week, the ball would be in Minnesota’s court as to whether to activate him for the final three games of the year. We’ll hear lots about it this weekend, including whether the Vikings’ coaching side is on the same page with the Vikings’ front-office."

Peterson's appeal hearing concluded Thursday and he now awaits Henderson's decision. Peterson avoided going to trial for a charge of child abuse when he pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor assault charge. The all-pro running back was then suspended by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell for the final six games of the regular season and won't be considered for reinstatement until April 15, 2015. Peterson hasn't played since Week 1 of the season.

Brian Murphy of the Pioneer Press expects a decision from Henderson to come in the middle of next week.

The Vikings host the 2-10 New York Jets on Sunday and a victory would give them a 6-7 record, keeping their slim playoff hopes alive. They close the regular season with road games in Detroit and Miami and a home game against the Bears.

Tarkenton wants Peterson out of the NFL

Vikings legendary quarterback Fran Tarkenton told King that there should be zero tolerance for domestic violence and child abuse in the NFL. He doesn't want to see Peterson play again.

"I followed the Clippers thing. That owner [Donald Sterling] didn’t get indicted for any crime, but the racial comments he made were totally inappropriate, and we took a stand. The whole world and the NBA, we have zero tolerance to racism. And I think that’s right. I agree with that. But I also think we ought to have zero tolerance to child abuse and domestic violence. I don’t think [Peterson] should play again in the NFL. I don’t think Ray Rice should play again. Either we have zero tolerance, or we don’t. And what is more egregious than domestic violence and child abuse? I don’t know of anything, unless you kill somebody."

Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer, in late November, told ESPN that everyone he's talked to supports Peterson's eventual return to the team.

"I think Adrian wants to be back here," Zimmer said. "You have to ask him. I don't know. But I know he does have an awful lot of people here who have supported him, and I don't know who he's speaking of who doesn't.

"All I know of Adrian is that he's always been great with me, always done what I've asked him to do, and I kind of go by what I see."

Stay tuned for a potentially busy Adrian Peterson-related weekend.

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