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Thursday, November 13, 2008
Black and Blue all over: Peterson on helmet

By Kevin Seifert
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com's Kevin Seifert

This will be the last time we mention Helmetgate. Really. We promise.

Minnesota tailback Adrian Peterson addressed the issue Wednesday during a conference call with Tampa Bay-area reporters, saying he was caught up in the emotion of Sunday's 28-27 victory over Green Bay when he removed his helmet on the field. NFL vice president Mike Pereira has said that Peterson should have been penalized for the act.

It's only fair to give Peterson an opportunity to explain himself. Here's how he put it:

"I was just really caught up in the moment. Especially after having the fumble and then coming back out with the mentality I had on the last drive. For me, it was more emotional because I had just fumbled to put us in a bad situation that could've cost us the game, and then in the last drive when we needed it, turned it around and got into the end zone. I was sitting on the sidelines and just really having faith, telling myself and telling the guys, 'Hey, we're going to win, we're going to pull it out.' Needing a career drive, having the faith it was really going to happen. I was just caught up in the moment. I wasn't trying to celebrate."

Again, Peterson's intent shouldn't have anything to do with whether officials flag him. By rule, he should have been penalized.

Continuing around the NFC North: