Minnesota's Peterson runs away with top awards for 2012

Sat Feb 2, 2013 10:48pm EST
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By Larry Fine

NEW ORLEANS (Reuters) - Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson carried off two top awards, including Most Valuable Player honors, at the National Football League awards show on Saturday.

Peterson, who overcame a career-threatening injury to lead the Vikings into the playoffs, was also named Offensive Player of the Year after coming within nine yards of setting a single season NFL rushing record.

While pleased to have won recognition for his performance, Peterson told reporters he was disappointed to have fallen short of his ultimate goal.

"I was definitely hoping to get to the Super Bowl. That was my goal," said the 27-year-old Peterson, whose 2011 season ended when he tore ligaments in his knee. "Come back, lead my team and help my team get to the Super Bowl.

"Unfortunately, that didn't happen. But I played my heart out every opportunity I had ... (and) I got a couple of good pieces of hardware to bring back and stack in my statue area.

"So it feels good."

The Houston Texans' J.J. Watt won the Defensive Player of the Year award.

"I can get a lot better, I'm only 23," Watt said. "I'm still growing as a human being, and as a person and as a player."   Continued...

Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson accepts the NFL MVP award during the NFL Honors awards show in New Orleans, Louisiana February 2, 2013. REUTERS/Jeff Haynes