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 === Cracks, Cuts & Comebacks: How AP got his groove back ===
 
 Courtesy of NewsUSA
 
 (Sports Network) - Adrian Peterson has a golden life littered with roadblocks,
 tragedies, injuries, loss and heartache, but beaming with success. His pops
 named him "All Day" because he never stops. The hood named him Purple Jesus
 because he's the No. 1 pigskin peddler on the NFL set. Take his total life
 experiences into account and he's really The Comeback Kid.
 
 Peterson learned the art of resilience at a young age. He lost his older
 brother, Brian, to a drunk driver and used football as medication. He starred
 in Pee Wee football and his dad -- a former shooting guard at Idaho State,
 whose NBA aspirations were shattered by an accidental shooting -- was the
 coach.
 
 When Peterson was 13, his father went to prison for laundering money for a
 crack racket. The lure of drug money entrapped his dad, a Walmart truck driver
 with 10 kids, making just eight dollars an hour. It was a tremendous loss to a
 black family trying to survive in The Lone Star State. With his mother as
 support, however, Peterson rebounded strongly in his dad's absence. He did his
 thing in basketball, track and football, creating a future for himself beyond
 Palestine, Texas.
 
 His prolific talent is only half of what comprises Purple Jesus. Peterson's
 complex life, familiar ghetto story and resilient nature, also endears him to
 the hood. His street credibility is bonkers. Like Peterson, the hood is
 resilient. In the trap, people tend to deal with adversity ranging from
 imprisoned family to illegal guns and drugs and the absence of fathers for
 extended and crucial periods of child development. These are elements of hood
 life that few have the opportunity to rise above. Peterson makes a habit out
 of it and inspires in the process.
 
 His 2012 return from potentially catastrophic knee surgery is his dopest
 comeback yet.
 
 Less than 10 months after surgery, Peterson's return has boosted a Minnesota
 team that was 3-13 in 2011. A.D.'s rushing has offense -- strapped Vikes,
 sitting at 6-4, 1 1/2 games behind the 7-2 Chicago Bears. Purple Jesus has
 risen to the NFL lead in yardage (1,128) and yards per game (112.8). He's not
 contact-shy either. He's putting in work with 224 touches. The explosion is
 official, and he's breaking dudes down like the old A.D., forcing a league-
 high 28 missed tackles.
 
 He's on his way to the greatest major knee recovery ever, for a running back.
 A.D. doesn't know how to half step. His life reflects that. He just picks up
 the pieces, barrels ahead and shines.
 
 Like Peterson's body, life on the margins can be brittle as a potato chip and
 tough as nails. It's full of people who have a desire to be great, but lack
 resources to make it happen. There's a cruel hypocrisy that lives within the
 hood culture. Peterson's dad and mom were college students with great
 intentions, but the criminal element was always hovering. Peterson has
 ridiculous ambitions, like wanting to rush for 2,500 yards in a season, but
 his body won't allow him to fulfill these goals. Falling down and getting back
 up is what A.D. does. It's a hood staple too.
 
 At times, his life has been a movie -- celebrity-ridden, affluent and NFL
 billboard plentiful. It's also been a tragic Broadway play, with guns,
 cocaine, loss, family and failure as leading characters.
 
 As a freshman at Oklahoma, Peterson finished second in the coveted Heisman
 voting. His next two years were bitter sweet as a high-ankle sprain and broken
 collarbone limited his next two seasons. The upside was his dad came back from
 prison in 2006. Peterson left Oklahoma after his junior season with the future
 looking brighter than 2 Chainz grill piece. But before he was able to enjoy
 becoming the 7th pick of the NFL's first-round by the Minnesota Vikings, he
 had to endure the murder of another half-brother, the night before the NFL
 Combine.
 
 That setback didn't knock his hustle, either. Like Bumpy Johnson did Dutch
 Shultz in the movie "Hoodlum," Peterson stormed the NFL, breaking the single-
 game rushing record with 296 yards. A week later, Peterson injured his LCL in
 his right knee against the Packers. In typical gritty, A.D. style, Peterson
 got right in two months and returned to torch Detroit for two scores. Despite
 doubters, Peterson was confident he could handle this second knee problem,
 because he man-handled the first one. But many people felt that this injury
 might knock him out the box. And even if his knee held, would his psyche?
 
 The clarity Whitney Houston's voice lost because of drugs was obvious. Her
 presence was felt, but her impact as a vocalist was compromised. Many thought
 A.D.'s banged up knees would meet the same fate. Even Mr. Workhorse himself,
 Jerry Rice, felt Peterson was rushing his return. Seems Rice and the other
 doubters were wrong.
 
 It's all good. They didn't really know A.D. As usual, when his pads were
 against the stadium walls, he came back. A mere return wasn't going to cut it
 either. He wanted that T.I. treatment. Peterson let opposing defenses know
 that the King was back, and with every tough yard gained, he's snatching the
 throne back.
 
 
 11/14 17:00:08 ET