Detroit Lions running back Adrian Peterson might be feeling deja vu this season.
That familiar sensation has nothing to do with Peterson’s on-field play. In the era of COVID-19, the NFL has explored possibly playing games on Tuesday night — or, as they did with a Week 4 matchup with the Patriots and Chiefs, pushing games back to Monday night.
So why would Peterson feel deja vu? Peterson and the Minnesota Vikings participated in, as of Oct. 7, 2020, the NFL’s most recent Tuesday night game.
The NFL could play Tuesday night games this season
For nearly a decade, the NFL has almost exclusively played games on three days: Thursday, Sunday, and Monday.
Depending on the holiday season, the NFL still plays the occasional Saturday game in December. But since 2012, when Thursday Night Football became a full-season event rather than half a year, the NFL has played on those three days.
All of that could change in 2020, the year where preconceived ideas of normalcy were thrown in the dumpster. If a COVID outbreak mandates a game can’t be played on Sunday, but it can be played on a Monday or Tuesday night, that is a path the NFL can take.
Take Week 4, where Cam Newton and the New England Patriots were supposed to play at the Kansas City Chiefs in a late-game matchup on Sunday, October 4.
Then, Newton tested positive for COVID-19 and, when the league determined both teams could play, the NFL pushed the game back one night.
Patrick Mahomes threw two touchdowns in the Chiefs’ 26-10 victory. Brian Hoyer, the veteran backup, went 15-of-24 for 130 yards and an interception before Bill Belichick pulled him for Jarrett Stidham.
Stidham only went 5-of-13 for 60 yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions.
There haven’t been many NFL games on Tuesday night
Added games on Monday night — the Patriots and Chiefs kicked off at 7 p.m. ET, two hours before the Falcons-Packers showdown on ESPN — isn’t anything new to the NFL.
Weather issues have forced Sunday games to be played on Monday nights in the past. The Jets and Bills had one such matchup in November 2014 after a snowstorm shook New York.
Detroit’s Ford Field hosted the game, a 38-3 Bills victory.
Tuesday night NFL games, though, are another story. After 1946, the league went over 60 years before having two teams play on a Tuesday.
Adrian Peterson and the Vikings played in the last Tuesday game
In December 2010, Michael Vick and the Philadelphia Eagles intended to host Adrian Peterson and the Minnesota Vikings for a Week 16 matchup.
Then came a massive snowstorm that blanketed Philadelphia. The NFL pushed the game back to Tuesday night, the league’s first Tuesday game since 1946.
Peterson picked up 118 yards and a touchdown on 22 carries in the Vikings’ 24-14 win at Lincoln Financial Field. Joe Webb, an athletic quarterback who later moved to receiver, completed 17 of his 26 passes for 195 yards in a spot start for the Vikings.
Webb added 31 rushing yards and a touchdown on six carries.
Vick went 25-of-43 for 263 yards, a touchdown, and an interception in the loss. Vick also had 63 yards and a touchdown on eight carries.
Eagles tight end Brent Celek had a game-high 10 catches for 97 yards. Minnesota’s explosive wideout, Percy Harvin, turned seven catches –including a 64-yard gain — into 100 yards.
Vikings defensive back Antoine Winfield had a 45-yard scoop-and-score in the win.