Peterson became the first freshman to finish second in the Heisman Trophy voting in 2004. He finished his Oklahoma career third all-time with 4,041 rushing yards. The Minnesota Vikings drafted him seventh overall in 2007. Peterson made his first of seven Pro Bowls his rookie season. He was the sixth-fastest player to reach 8,000 rushing years. In 2012, Peterson won MVP after rushing for 2,097 yards and 12 touchdowns.
In 2014, Peterson pleaded no contest on the charge of recklessly assaulting his four-year-old son. Peterson struck his son with a tree branch on the back, buttocks, genitals, ankles and legs. The Vikings deactivated Peterson following the indictment; he missed 15 games during the 2014 season.