motivational spotlight of the week: Adrian Peterson
CONTRIBUTOR: KENT SHEN, XCLEVATION
Welcome to our motivational spotlight of the week feature, where each week, we will look at one professional athlete that has overcome a big injury and continued to perform at the highest level. We hope that these stories will help inspire you in your own recoveries to come back stronger than ever!
Our next feature will shine the spotlight on Adrian Peterson, one of only 7 running backs to eclipse 2000 yards rushing in a season.
BEFORE THE INJURY
After a star-studded college career at Oklahoma University, Adrian Peterson came crashing into the NFL in 2007 as the 7th overall pick. Appropriately nicknamed “All Day” by his father because of his endurance and energy, he took the league by storm and immediately established himself as one of the most productive backs in the league.
The then Vikings star posted 4 1000 yard seasons to begin his career, leading the league in rushing in just his second season and making the Pro Bowl each of those 4 seasons.
2011 began like any other season for the superstar tailback, with AP on pace for another 1000 yard season and Pro Bowl berth, until he took a hit from Redskins safety DeJon Gomes during a December 24 tilt against Washington, causing him to tear both his ACL and MCL, ending his season just 30 yards shy of his 5th straight 1000 yard campaign.
Many didn’t expect Peterson to be ready in time for the 2012 season, with just 9 months to recover.
That didn’t stop Peterson. “All Day” didn’t just make it back in time to start the season, he ended up starting all 16 games, posting 2097 rushing yards and the league’s Most Valuable Player award. He finished just 8 yards shy of breaking Eric Dickerson’s record for rushing yards in a season.
Peterson’s hard work during his rehab not only allowed him to beat his timetable, but allowed him to come back stronger than ever, and gave us one of the most memorable seasons we’ve seen from a running back – a historic campaign that is even more impressive considering the man had just torn his ACL and MCL just 9 months earlier.