Jeff Pash says NFL not trying to end Adrian Peterson's career

NFL executive vice president Jeff Pash told ESPN that the league isn't trying to end suspended Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson's career.

Peterson is suspended for at least the rest of the season without pay after pleading no contest in a child abuse case.

"The critical component of what the commissioner [Roger Goodell] did yesterday was put in place a program that will help Mr. Peterson succeed," Pash said. "It will help him extend his career," Pash said. "We're not trying to end his career. We want to extend his career. We want to have a great player on the field with the confidence that he won't face these kind of issues again."

Lawyer Rusty Hardin was critical of the NFL's response.

"I'm just amazed the way they just keep making these things up as they go along," Hardin said. "They looked bad in the earlier things. With Ray Rice, they handled things badly, publicly. And now, they've just decided to make Adrian the scapegoat for all of their past failings. This has cost him his reputation. It's cost him millions of dollars. Every endorser dropped him like a hotcake.

"Next to Peyton Manning, he was the second [most] heavily endorsed athlete in the NFL. He's lost all of that, all because of the public's outcry, the people's perception of this. He's paid for that. And now the NFL wants to come along and keep him from working an entire year? And everybody says, well, it didn't cost him any money. What do you mean it didn't cost him any money? It's cost him current; it's cost him future."

Follow me on Twitter: @RavensInsider

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.