NFL to review Adrian Peterson case for ‘potential discipline’
(CNN) — The NFL announced Thursday it will review Adrian Peterson’s status now that he has reached a plea deal after being charged with whipping his son, according to a league spokesman.
Peterson — who in 2011 signed a seven-year contract worth more than $100 million and is considered one of the NFL’s best running backs, if not the best — took a leave of absence from the Minnesota Vikings in September after the team deactivated, then activated and then deactivated him again.
He was placed on the reserve/commissioner exempt list by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, which allows the Vikings to pay Peterson while he sorts out his legal issues. At no point has Peterson been suspended.
“His matter will now be reviewed for potential discipline under the NFL’s personal conduct policy,” said Brian McCarthy, the NFL’s vice president of corporate communications.
Peterson will remain on the exempt list “pending completion of the process,” according to McCarthy. He has the opportunity to have a hearing prior to being disciplined by the league.
The plea deal
Peterson was accused in Texas of whipping his 4-year-old son with a “switch,” or slender tree branch, and had originally been charged with felony child abuse. He faced up to two years in prison and a fine.
On Tuesday, Peterson pleaded no contest in a Texas court to one count of misdemeanor reckless assault.
The Vikings star was sentenced to two years of probation, a $4,000 fine and 80 hours of community service, half of which will be taken care of by a public service announcement.
He also will take parenting classes.
“I truly regret this incident,” Peterson said after accepting the deal. “I stand here and I take full responsibility for my actions. I love my son more than any one of you can even imagine.”
His attorney, Rusty Hardin, called the plea deal “fair and just.”
Montgomery County District Attorney Brett Ligon said Peterson wasn’t treated any differently because he is one of the NFL’s marquee players.