NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced today in a letter to Adrian Peterson that the league has decided to suspend him without pay for the rest of the 2014 season.
In his letter Goodell comes out forcefully against Peterson's use of corporal punishment on his child, writing:
"First, the injury was inflicted on a child who was only four years old. The difference in size and strength between you and the child is significant, and your actions clearly caused physical injury to the child. While an adult may have a number of options when confronted with abuse -- to flee, to fight back, or to seek help from law enforcement -- none of those options is realistically available to a four-year old child. Further, the injury inflicted on your son includes the emotional and psychological trauma to a young child who suffers criminal physical abuse at the hands of his father."
Goodell also says Peterson's "lack of meaningful remorse" factored into the decision. Peterson will not be paid while on suspension. Previously he was still collecting checks while serving time on the Commissioner's Exempt list.
Peterson will have to undergo counseling and treatment and meet periodically with Goodell before the NFL will reinstate him. Their first meeting won't be held until April 15.
Peterson has been bickering with the league over its "unfair" and "arbitrary" disciplinary process during the saga. He skipped a meeting with the NFL on Friday and yesterday a mediator heard from both sides.
The NFLPA claims in its statement that an unnamed NFL executive told Peterson his time spent on the Commissioner's Exempt list would be credited for time served, but now that appears to not be the case.
"The decision by the NFL to suspend Adrian Peterson is another example of the credibility gap that exists between the agreements [the NFL] make[s] and the actions they take," the statement reads.
[UPDATE]: The Vikings want no part of the ongoing bickering between Peterson and the NFL. They issued a statement this morning:
"The NFL has informed the Vikings of today's decision regarding Adrian Peterson. We respect the league's decision and will have no further comment at this time."