Adrian Peterson

Preston Potter

Michael Jordan once said. Some people want it to happen, some wish it would happen, others make it happen.

Early LIfe and Family

Adrian Lewis Peterson was born on March 21, 1985, in Palestine, Texas, a small town between Houston and Dallas. His parents, Bonita Brown and Nelson Peterson, had been star athletes in college. Nelson was a shooting guard for Idaho State with an NBA career in the offing. That dream was derailed when a gun that his brother was cleaning discharged into his leg. The wound became infected and several surgeries later Nelson accepted the fact that his basketball career wasn’t going to happen. With several children to support, he joined the working world.

High School

After his junior year, Adrian realized he would likely have his pick of colleges. During his senior season, he decided that he wanted to go to a school where he could be a difference-maker in a national championship run. After considering Texas, Texas A&M and, Arkansas, Adrian narrowed his choices down to USC and Oklahoma. There was a funny moment in coach Harrell’s office when recruiters got into a heated argument about who would get to see Adrian first.

What makes him special?

Adrian is very big and very fast. Perhaps bigger and faster than people realize in the heat of battle. During his rookie year, a lot of defenders took bad angles on him and paid a dear price. Either Adrian ran past their intended point of contact or simply ran right over them.

Adrian is also deceptive. His shakes and wiggles freeze good wide open-field tacklers, giving him running room where it seems he has none. When he cuts or spins or sidesteps, he is back at full speed within a stride. Once in the open field, Adrian tends to get faster where other backs might level off. He has pull-away speed when it matters most, even after the 2011 knee injury.


Adrian himself has been through many tragedies far before joining the NFL. At the mere age of seven he lost his brother to a car accident involving a drunk driver. Because of this, Adrian was angry. Although, feeling overwhelmed with anger, Adrian learned to channel his negative energy into athletics. Adrian played basketball, ran track and was obviously the best at football. He ran a whopping 2,960 yards in his senior year! That's almost 9000 feet! After multiple awards from tons of different organizations, Adrian decided to attend University of Oklahoma.