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Interview: Redskins RB Adrian Peterson

via Washington Redskins

May 21, 2020

On how he has managed the virtual offseason and if it has been difficult:

“No not really. Normally, during this period, I’m kind of with my personal trainer, doing the things that I need to do to take care of my body. But of course, it would have been different taking the new Head Coach and the new system that we’re putting in, unfortunately we’re all kind of missing out on that. I’m just doing my regular regimen. Just working, three to four times a week, and just keeping my body physically innate. We’re able to do our Zoom meetings and learn this new offense to the best of our ability.”

On learning the new offense:

“Yeah, it’s been a long time. [Offensive Coordinator] Coach [Scott] Turner was in Minnesota, so some of the offensive is kind of familiar, but one thing I’ve taken from his offense thus far is, the running back has a really big role. So, they’re going to ask us to do a lot of things, we’re going to have multiple backs on the field at times as well. Just going over and learning offense right now has been exciting to see, just our role in our offense.”

On the additions to the running back room:

“I like it. Both of those guys [Peyton Barber and Antonio Gibson] are talented, especially the young guy coming in and what he was able to do in school. I think it was a good move. It was a good move by the Redskins organization. When you’ve got good players and playmakers out there, you want to add those guys to your team. Obviously, our ultimate goal is winning a championship, so if we feel like, it doesn’t matter what position it is, if this guy can be effective and help this team win, then you bring those guys on. I’m excited to actually get back out there, put the pads on, and see how these guys look in person.”

On what he expects from TE Thaddeus Moss:

“I really don’t know what to expect. I didn’t get to really watch LSU that much, I watched the championship game, and saw him get in the end zone there. If he has a drop of his dad’s talent, I’ll respect the upmost out of him. It’s kind of cool to be able to play with him, taken that I’ve played with his father as well. One thing I tell my kids today is, I want you to be better than I was, not to have to worry about the comparison, because, Randy Moss is probably the best wide receiver to ever play the game. Let me rephrase that, he is the best, in my opinion. The numbers don’t show that, but you just look at his talent and what he was able to accomplish and how he played the game, man, there was no one like Moss. I am expecting him to do some good things in a totally different position as well.”

On San Francisco 49ers LT Trent Williams:

“I didn’t really like the trade, obviously. I feel like Trent is the best offensive lineman in the game. I’m able to see him firsthand and what he’s able to do. I was hoping there would be some good ending to him and what the Redskins were dealing with but, I’m happy for him. I’ve been on Trent since he was in high school and as long as he’s happy, that’s all that matters.”

On standing out in the running back room:

“Besides talent? Just how versatile you are. Are you a guy that is going to be a good receiver, that’s going to protect, and obviously run as well. Those are the key things; how much can you contribute to the offense. Can you be a three down back, can you be in there on every down, so those are the main factors.”

On establishing a culture virtually:

“You know, I don’t know. It’s the man that’s leading. You lead by example. Thus far, obviously we’ve all had our opportunities to talk to [Head] Coach Ron [Rivera], and during our team meetings, have the opportunity just to listen to what he has to say. He’s been around for a long time, think he has over 30 years of experience in the NFL, so guys know who he is. We know people that have played under him as well. You know what to expect, you know. When a person talks, you can sense what they’re about. So, just strictly off that that, we have a good understand that hey, it’s going to be a change, it’s going to be different. Obviously it’s hard to get that true feel of how things are going to be when you haven’t had the opportunity to be inside, and be in the building, and going to meetings, and going to practice and just seeing and feeling the flow of everything so, it’s hard to establish that when we’re all at home.”

On how he stays motivated:

“The love for the game. I love competing. There’s nothing like the comradery that happens within the locker room and being around so many guys from so many different backgrounds. Just playing this ultimate team game. The love of the game, chasing the championship, all that is keeping me going and keeping me motivated. I’ve been blessed to continue to do it at a high level, especially at my position, going on year 14. I’m just taking it all in and enjoying it while I can.”

On the goals for 2020:

“The goal is the same: win the NFC East.”

On his personal goals for 2020:

“My personal goals? Just to contribute. Obviously, my mindset, I want to be a guy that helps lead us to a championship. So, whatever role that is, I’ll be taking part in and I’m going to put my best foot forward. I feel like the things you do during the offseason, with physically getting your body ready and mentally having a grasp of what they’re asking you to do, it will put you in position when the time comes to be one of those guys that can help the team win. Win the NFC East and put ourselves in a position to compete for a championship. I feel like everything else will kind of flow and fall under that if those things come in alignment.”

On what he is expecting from QB Dwayne Haskins Jr.:

“I want to see him blossom. I’m expecting big things from him. I know he’s been in his book and he’s working hard to be that leader that we need him to be. I think last year was an eye opener for him, just the transition he went through from training camp to the end of the season. I was able to see him grow. That’s what I look forward for him to do with this new system and helping this team win a championship.”

On mentoring the young running backs:

“I’ve always had the mindset of, being open to competition. That’s what it’s all about, guys pushing each other. I will embrace it the same way. People ask me that question all the time, man, Redskins really? They’re packing that running back role. I’m like, yeah, they are but hey, it is what it is. It is what it is until you’ve got to lace them up and get out there and execute and produce at the end of the day. I had the opportunity to talk to the young guys, a couple weeks ago. I told them, it still stands, anything I can help you with, here’s my number, call me, and once you get back to playing football it’s going to be the same thing. I’m helping those guys improve. I want to see those guys prosper, I want to see those guys take their game to the max, to their potential, to reach their full potential. I’m not that guy that’s going to withhold something, to get myself an edge. A lot of these guys look up to me and still do at a young age. I’m going to do my part.”

On what players have reached out to him:

“It was just a couple of weeks ago, none of them have reached out, but I told them the door is open for them to reach out. I’m sure once the season starts, they’ll be there, they’ll be around. I’m sure that they’ll want to pick my brain and ask me things, as far as how my recovery is during the week and so forth. We’ll see.”

On who he looked up to in the NFL when he was young:

“[Former RB] LaDainian Tomlinson was a guy that, he was from Texas, obviously he was a late player in the NFL, and he was a guy that I looked up to. I’ll never forget my rookie year, playing the Chargers in Minnesota and just talking to him after the game. I was so wired up to meet him and to play against him. What he told me was hey, just continue to put in the work that you have put in, you can always be respectful to your peers but, in order to be the best you have to think and put the work in to be the best. That’s something that I’ve continued to share with young guys when I meet them. There’s nothing wrong with respecting me or other running backs that you might look up to, but you want to have in your mindset that you are going to be the best to play the game. You can’t just think about that you obviously have to put the work in as well. It feels good to kind of flip positions and be that guy that’s delivering that message to a lot of young guys now.”

On how he feels about the team going into the 2020 season:

“This would definitely be the best talent pool that we’ve had since I’ve been here. Obviously with Trent [Williams] not being around, but there’s a lot of guys like [OT Geron] Christian he’s down here, he’s working out. He’s been working out the past two years here. Man, just to see how he’s improving has been tremendous. We have so much talent offensively. Defensively, guys that we brought in during the offseason and free agency, I feel like we have what it takes. I really feel like we have what it takes to be that team that takes it all the way. It’s all about just getting the pieces together, getting into our rhythm and molding as the season starts and goes. Out of the three years I’ve been here, obviously we haven’t been around each other yet to see how things look but, just based on moves that we’ve made, based on how things went last year and the guys that we had last year that stepped up and played some big roles for us as a team, and then with [QB Dwayne] Haskins coming back again I’m really excited about him and how he ended the season last year. It was just tremendous to see him unfolding and let his game go to a high level. It clicked, you can see that by how he’s working out and how he’s approaching things and obviously that’s going to be the main peace for us on the offensive side of the ball at the far back position. Just to see him, it’s going to be night and day from what we’ve been seeing, the positive part of his game towards the end of the season last year, and all our young wide receivers. We’ve got the tools; we have the tools to run the tables. I really feel that. At the end of the day that all sounds good because you’ve seen teams that have played with talent offensively and defensively but ultimately, they haven’t gotten it done. It’s going to be all about getting all the pieces together, making sure we’re executing what they’re asking us to execute, and having that confidence, and getting it done.”

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