Adrian Peterson’s contrition

Now can Adrian Peterson play football again?

When the soon-to-be-former Minnesota Vikings running back was suspended by the NFL for the rest of the season, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said part of the reason was that Peterson didn’t appear to be contrite for beating his son.

Now, he appears to be contrite, based on an interview he gave to former Twin Cities sports reporter Tom Pelissero of USA Today.

“I won’t ever use a switch again,” Peterson said. “There’s different situations where a child needs to be disciplined as far as timeout, taking their toys away, making them take a nap. There’s so many different ways to discipline your kids.”

In the more than 90-minute phone interview – Peterson’s first extensive public remarks since his Sept. 11 indictment – he spoke with USA TODAY Sports on a wide variety of topics, including why he refused to attend a hearing with the NFL before Commissioner Roger Goodell suspended him as well as his future with the Minnesota Vikings.

“I would love to go back and play in Minnesota to get a feel and just see if my family still feels comfortable there,” Peterson said. “But if there’s word out that hey, they might release me, then so be it. I would feel good knowing that I’ve given everything I had in me.”

Peterson said he talked to his son recently for the first time in five months.

“No one knows how I felt when I turned my child around after spanking him and seeing what I had left on his leg,” Peterson said. “No one knows that Dad sat there and apologized to him, hugged him and told him that I didn’t mean to do this to you and how sorry I was.

“I love my son. I love my kids, my family. Like I said after I took the misdemeanor plea, I take full responsibility for my actions. I regret the situation. I love my son more than any one of you could even imagine.”

  • John O.

    My own guess is he plays football again. In Dallas.

  • Maura

    Well isn’t that convenient. What about the texts he sent the boy’s mother, bragging about the boy “didn’t drop one tear” and being “tough as nails.” http://minnesota.cbslocal.com/2014/09/12/adrian-peterson-indicted-for-child-abuse/ Contrite now? My hope is that this move by the NFL shakes these players to their very core, and it alters their view of abusive behavior. At least if he plays here, Henn County has made sure he has supervised visits. Sounds like he wants to move back to TX. If so, good riddance. Let him serially impregnate the groupies down there.

  • Kassie

    “No one knows how I felt when I turned my child around after spanking him and seeing what I had left on his leg,” Peterson said. “No one knows that Dad sat there and apologized to him, hugged him and told him that I didn’t mean to do this to you and how sorry I was.”

    That just makes him sound more like a child abuser to me and less like a guy who didn’t know where the line was between discipline and child abuse. Abused women often talk about how sorry their abuser was for hurting them and how sweet they can be after the abuse. Until they get mad again.

    • Michele

      Hitting a child is wrong. Pure and simple. AP is clearly an abuser, but so are the many people who spank their children. It’s just a matter of degree. Violence is not the right way to solve problems and inculcating a child in the cycle of violence by hitting/spanking is just counter productive in a world of increasing social complexity. We all need to find ways of “using our words” and solving problems and differences thoughtfully and non-violently.

      • Kassie

        I disagree. Spanking with an open hand, on the butt, with minimal force is a legitimate choice in child discipline. Not a choice I would choose, but a legal and legitimate choice.

        65% of Americans approve of spanking and 50% of American parents state they sometimes spank their children. Statistics from here: http://abcnews.go.com/US/story?id=90406