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Thursday, March 6, 2014
Peterson: Vick is key to playoffs

By Ben Goessling

MINNEAPOLIS -- As the Minnesota Vikings head into free agency in search of a veteran quarterback, their franchise player has an idea about what they should do next.

Running back Adrian Peterson is interested in the team bringing Michael Vick to Minnesota to be the team's starter. The 2012 NFL MVP tweeted his thoughts Wednesday night.

@MikeVick would intently make the vikings a playoff team!

- Adrian Peterson (@AdrianPeterson) March 6, 2014

Vick, who will turn 34 in June, started just six games for the Philadelphia Eagles last season before losing his job to Nick Foles after a hamstring injury. Vick hasn't started more than 13 games in a season since 2006, and it wouldn't seem like he is the best fit for new offensive coordinator Norv Turner's offense.

But considering the Vikings' quarterback situation, it's difficult to rule anything out.

Christian Ponder is the only Vikings quarterback under contract, after Matt Cassel opted out of his 2014 contract in February. Josh Freeman, whom the Vikings signed to a one-year, $2 million deal and used in one game last season, also is a free agent.

Vick might be one of the more credible options in a thin free-agent market that includes Josh McCown and David Garrard in addition to Cassel and Freeman.

Appearing on ESPN Radio's "The Herd" Thursday, Vikings general manager Rick Spielman said that due to tampering rules he wasn't allowed to comment on Vick. But he said when adding high-profile players, the Vikings examine how they would affect the team's culture.

"When Brett Favre was here it became a real media attention grabber, but we ended up getting to the NFC Championship Game," he said. "A lot of it has to do with how the coaches feel about it. Do you want the distractions? Is your team mature enough to handle the distractions? It's always going to come down to: Can you handle it and is he going to help you win ballgames?"

According to The Associated Press, Vick and the Eagles haven't ruled out the quarterback returning to Philadelphia if he doesn't find the right fit elsewhere.

The Eagles signed Vick in 2009, after he had served his 21-month federal prison sentence and was reinstated by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. The move was controversial among fans who objected to Vick's dogfighting activities and also because the Eagles already had Donovan McNabb and Kevin Kolb on their roster.

Vick played sparingly in 2009. In 2010, after the Eagles had traded McNabb to Washington, Vick took over the starting job when Kolb was sidelined by a concussion. Vick played some of the best football of his career that season, leading the Eagles to a playoff berth. He was rewarded with a long-term contract but was plagued by injuries (missing nine of 32 games) and interceptions (24) in 2011 and 2012.

In his career, including his six seasons with Atlanta, Vick has played in all 16 games only once, in 2006. Eagles reporter Phil Sheridan and The Associated Press contributed to this report.