Peterson never lost sleep over charges
NOV 23, 2012 2:11p ET
Talking at Winter Park for the first time since testifying in front of a grand jury, Peterson said Friday he is looking forward to continuing his MVP-type season when the Minnesota Vikings return to action in Chicago this weekend following a bye.
Peterson, who was arrested July 7 at a Houston nightclub for allegedly pushing an off-duty police officer and refusing to put his hands behind his head when asked, had his case dismissed last week. He leads the NFL with 1,128 rushing yards and said he hasn't been bothered by the ongoing case but is happy it's behind him.
"To be honest, it's bittersweet for me," Peterson said Friday. "I knew it was going to get dropped. Everything was false. Reports and everything, from all officers, had different stories. So I wasn't concerned. I wasn't bothered by it at all."
Peterson was one of five people to testify before the unusual and surprising grand jury setup after an agreement between prosecutors and Peterson's side. After hearing from Peterson, three employees of the Bayou Club where Peterson was arrested and one of the officers, the grand jury returned a "No Bill," which meant Peterson's case would be dismissed.
"To be honest with you, I hated it got dropped in front of the grand jury (privately, but) everything got covered," Peterson said. "But it's a blessing to have it out of the way and I can move forward."
Peterson, 27, was handcuffed and briefly jailed back in July before he was released on a $1,000 bond. He testified for about 25 minutes last week in front of a grand jury of 12 citizens in a rare case of a misdemeanor being heard by a grand jury.
Peterson, though he never appeared distracted on the football field, now can get back to his amazing season.
"Ultimately, it's dropped; it's over with," Peterson said. "I was just biting my tongue, swallowing my pride. It's a done deal."
Coming off surgery to repair two torn knee ligaments on Dec. 30, Peterson has amazed many this season with his tireless rehab and a recovery in which he has regained his status as perhaps the league's best running back. He has runs of at least 60-plus yards in each of his past three games and has topped the 100-yard mark in each of his last four games.
Being thought of as a possible MVP candidate only confirms Peterson's belief in himself. He's averaging a career-high 5.8 yards per carry and is on pace to set a new career best in rushing yards.
"It feels good," Peterson said of being mentioned as a possible MVP. "I play this game to be the best, and when you're getting talked about the MVP then other people looking at you in that light, too. So, it's cool. I'm just going to continue doing what I'm doing, not worrying about that, everything else will fall in place."
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