MINNEAPOLIS, June 22 (UPI) -- 'Purple Jesus' defied odds last season, rushing for a league-high 1,485 yards.
But tough offseason workouts have began to bore Adrian Peterson mentally. They could even trigger an eventual retirement.
The Minnesota Vikings all-pro told ESPN's Ben Goessling that he favors personal workouts over training camp, OTAs and other organized workouts.
"That's it," Peterson told Goessling. "Training camp, going through the grind, OTAs and all that -- that will definitely be the deciding factor. Physically, body-wise, I'll be good. It's just mentally -- like with OTAs, I'm out there practicing, I'm going, I'm putting in work. But it's so repetitive that it's more suited toward the young guys and getting them into the system. It gets kind of boring."
Peterson is 6,681 yards from breaking Emmitt Smith's career rushing record. He would need to average about 1,114 rushing yards over the next six seasons to break the record. He could also break the record by averaging 1,337 yards over the next five seasons. It would take Peterson 72 games, rushing at last season's 92.8 yards per game average, to break Smith's record.
"Think about this: The 2012 season [after recovering from ACL surgery], I didn't do any training camp," Peterson told Goessling. "But I was over there on the side, working out. You get that extra month of working out? Come on, man. I would much rather not participate in training camp and work out, just to have more of an edge. Training camp, you're going out there, you're playing football, you're going to lift, and after that, you don't want to do anything. You're tired, from meetings and all that."
He was suspended in 2014 after his involvement in a misdemeanor reckless assault incident against one of his children. The NFL reinstated him in April 2015.
Last month, Peterson told the St. Paul Pioneer Press that he wanted to "get out there" to preseason action.
"I feel like getting out there and playing a little bit," Peterson told The Press' Chris Tomasson. "It's something that once that time comes around, I'll have a better feel for, like, 'Hey, I need to get out there just to kind of get the legs moving and get the pads [on] a little bit.' I can tell you, though, I'm definitely more itching towards playing a little more in the preseason than I have the past seven, eight years."
The 31-year-old could become just the 13th running back to ever rush for more than 1,000 yards at that age.
Peterson was working out at his Houston-area home, but joined the Vikings for its first OTA sessions on May 24. If he would have missed OTAs, it would cost him a $250,000 workout bonus.
Peterson and his wife, Ashley, welcomed son Axyl in September. They have four other children. He signed a three-year, $44 million contract last July. That deal contained $20 million guaranteed and pays him about $13 million in 2016, including the annual workout bonus and a roster bonus.