Adrian Peterson believes he could have gone directly from high school to the NFL.
"Not to sound cocky or anything, or confident, but yeah, I do feel like I could have came out my senior year of high school and played in the NFL,'' Peterson said Monday on a conference call with Denver-area area media leading up to Sunday's Minnesota Vikings-Denver Broncos game. "I really do. And I'll just say this, people were like 'well, physically you just weren't ready.' I came in my freshman year and I was up for the Heisman, had a pretty good season, was the leading rusher."
Peterson rushed for 2,960 yards and 32 touchdowns as a high school senior in 2003 and then went on to rush for 1,860 yards with 15 touchdowns -- 5.9 yards per carry -- as a true freshman for Oklahoma.
"And there were guys that went in the league that year, like Cedric Benson, I felt like my freshman year I should have won the Doak Walker Award [for the nation's top college running back], but they gave it to him -- I kind of got off topic there. But anyway ... I feel like I was a better player than him. And so it's like, 'I'm a true freshman, and if Cedric can go in [to the NFL] and play, then why couldn't I do it?'''