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Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson (28) runs through drills at training camp at Minnesota State University. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports
Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson (28) runs through drills at training camp at Minnesota State University. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

Vikings Peterson unlikely to play in Friday's preseason opener

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Minnesota Vikings star running back Adrian Peterson will not get his first preseason carry since 2011 any time soon.

Peterson is expected to be held out of Friday's preseason opener , which has become a matter of course in Minnesota. This would be the third consecutive preseason Peterson doesn't log a rushing attempt if new head coach Mike Zimmer follows Peterson's established August routine.

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Zimmer foreshadowed the decision last month saying the Vikings have "nothing to see" from Peterson.

Zimmer said the injury risks are too great to have Peterson playing much, if at all, in exhibition games. However, he will allow Peterson to see some action if he thinks it will benefit him.

Peterson said the Vikings offense will not be as reliant on him as in the past because it is much more versatile under first-year coach Zimmer and offensive coordinator Norv Turner.

There is some drama surrounding the position, however, with Toby Gerhart gone. Gerhard signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars for a chance to be a bell-cow featured back.

In Gerhart's absence, the backfield will be a battleground in preseason.

Matt Asiata is listed second on the current depth chart, but rookie Jerick McKinnon, a third-round pick, has "special" ability, Peterson said.

Veteran quarterback Matt Cassel is ahead of Teddy Bridgewater, but the rookie first-round pick is impressing coaches and teammates through the first two weeks of workouts. How he fares against the Oakland Raiders' backups could dictate the pecking order at the position going forward.

The Vikings also waived rookie tight end A.C. Leonard out of Tennessee State.

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