Adrian Peterson's appeal of his suspension for his child abuse arrest and plea deal was denied yesterday, and now the running back is said to be contemplating his future in the NFL.

Peterson will file a lawsuit against the league over its disciplinary process, one that could put his reinstatement at risk. If he is not able to re-enter the NFL relatively soon — his current suspension lasts through April — among Peterson's options are retirement, or attempting to compete in the Olympics, according to a 60-minute phone interview Peterson had with ESPN:

"I've considered retiring from the NFL," Peterson said. "I still made $8 million dollars this year. I've thought about getting back into the real estate (business in Texas) I'm already in. That's something I've been interested in, something I'm involved in. I've thought about getting back into that. I've thought about going after the Olympics — you only live once. It might be time for me to pursue that, as well. I love playing football, don't get me wrong, but this situation is deeper than that. For me, it's like, 'Why should I continue to be a part of an organization or a business that handles players the way they do? Making money off the field anyway, why not continue to pursue that (Olympic) dream and pursue other dreams and hang up the cleats?'"

According to a person with direct knowledge of the situation, a lawsuit will be filed against the NFL on Peterson's behalf in federal court in Minnesota as early as Monday. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the lawsuit had not yet been filed.

Peterson said he's interested in competing in the 200- and 400-meter dashes in the Olympics, adding, "I've seriously thought about this real hard. I continue to pray about it, but it's been something that has been heavy, heavy on my heart.

Would Peterson actually give up the millions left on his contract for a shot at the Olympics? Although he can apply for reinstatement in April, Peterson will likely miss the first three games of next season, obviously getting paid every week after that. The Vikings would probably welcome Peterson back with open arms as long as he runs the way he used to.

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There's still plenty of time before all the details get sorted out. Ideally, this situation will end with Roger Goodell somehow getting fired.

[ESPN]

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Photo via AP