Three days into the NFL free agent signing period and a fun question might loom larger than any other: Do the Dallas Cowboys have greater interest in Minnesota Vikings’ running back Adrian Peterson now?
Peterson to America’s Team has been a rumor for months, but it was generally considered a pipe dream. If for no other reason, the financial details really didn’t seem to fit. Then there was Peterson’s legal troubles and league-imposed suspension handed down last September.
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But then the NFL’s defending rushing champion, DeMarco Murray, decided to basically engineer his way out of Dallas to, of all places, Philadelphia – Eagles head coach Chip Kelly may have finally dug his own grave with this signing, but time will tell on that.
I don’t truly expect owner and general manager Jerry Jones or son Stephen Jones, executive vice president, to get too personal about this highly unexpected departure.
That being said, I wouldn’t rule it out.
Not since the pursuit of free-agent cornerback Deion Sanders back in the fall of 1995 has there been such a personal and dramatic story concerning a skill-position player from the Cowboys. Murray, apparently stymied early on during the free-agent signing period this week, ended up finding what he was looking for in the most unlikely location possible.
Nevermind Kelly’s trading away long-time Philly running back LeSean McCoy to the Buffalo Bills for a linebacker most people have never heard of.
Forget the free-agent signing of running back Ryan Matthews from the San Diego Chargers just a matter of hours prior to the unexpected phone calls with Murray.
The flat-out bizarre trade for quarterback Sam Bradford aside, Murray likely has no idea where he’s actually heading, but we do know now that this really was all about the money to Murray.
Hopefully, for the sake of the franchise, the Cowboys don’t make a knee-jerk reaction.
In other words, it would not be prudent to suddenly open the floodgates for Peterson, who apparently wants out of Minnesota following last season’s legal dramatics.
But one has to ask themselves whether or not the Cowboys might be willing to try to engineer a trade for Peterson, a move widely speculated at this time.
Imagine that the Vikings don’t end up asking the farm for a previously injured running back who’s about to turn 30 later this month. What if the asking price is manageable and Peterson agrees to take the same kind of pay cut that Minnesota might have an interest in?
Would this not be, under the right conditions, a huge flipping of the bird to the Eagles in landing Peterson, who would then be placed behind the best offensive line in the league?
Yes, it’s all speculation right now but there might not be a hotter trade rumor in the entire NFL until Peterson’s status with the Vikings is finally resolved.
I will say this, though: If Peterson does end up leaving the Vikings to play for a contender, I would bet more than a wooden nickel that Dallas is his new residence for 2015.
If I’m right about this, then it’s a rather safe bet that the Cowboys never planned to re-sign Murray in the first place.
Does it not look now like this might have actually been the case all along?
Dallas is clearly on an obvious standstill during this free-agent signing window, but what, or who, is it really waiting for?