Adrian Peterson contemplating retirement, legal action

Suspended Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson says he's contemplated retirement, and legal action against the NFL after his suspension was upheld by arbitrator Harold Henderson.

"I've considered retiring from the NFL," Peterson told ESPN. "I still made $8 million dollars this year. I've thought about getting back into the real estate I'm already in. That's something I've been interested in, something I'm involved in. I've thought about getting back into that. I've thought about going after the Olympics -- you only live once. It might be time for me to pursue that, as well. I love playing football, don't get me wrong, but this situation is deeper than that.

"For me, it's like, 'Why should I continue to be a part of an organization or a business that handles players the way they do? Making money off the field anyway, why not continue to pursue that (Olympic) dream and pursue other dreams and hang up the cleats?'"

A lawsuit in federal court on Peterson's behalf is expecte to be filed soon.

Peterson says he'd miss playing football.

"Of course I'd miss it," he siad. "It's my first love. But the reason I would be walking away from it would be (if the next steps in the process) kind of solidify that hurt from these incidents. I would know that, 'Hey, you're walking away not because you've given up. You're walking away because they're handling you all the way wrong in this situation. They're painting you out to be a guy that you're not."

Peterson was indicted and plead no contest to misdemeanor reckless assault for hitting his four-year-old son with a wooden switch.

Peterson said he saw his son recently.

"He was running to me, and he jumped in my arms," Peterson said. "I know the counselor is thinking, 'This is not what I expected.' The kid jumped in my arms. He was rubbing my head, pulling me to go play with him."

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Aaron Wilson covers the Ravens for The Baltimore Sun

Aaron Wilson
Aaron Wilson covers the NFL for National Football Post, his second stint at the Post. He has previously written for Pro Football Talk and FOX Sports-Scout. Entering his 13th year covering the Baltimore Ravens, he's a beat writer for The Baltimore Sun. Wilson has also covered the Jacksonville Jaguars and Tennessee Titans.