Toby Gerhart trade rumors: Vikings could put RB on the block

USA TODAY Sports

Gerhart's production was way down in 2012, which admittedly may have had something to do with the guy in front of him.

Minnesota Vikings running back Toby Gerhart is entering his contract year, and he could be available on the trade market, Tom Pelissero of 1500 ESPN Twin Cities reported.

The Vikings' primary back is Adrian Peterson, who obviously got a load of the work last season when he ran for 2,097 yards and missed the NFL's all-time rushing record by seven yards, winning the NFL Most Valuable Player award as a result. Thus, Gerhart was relegated to mostly third downs last season. He had 50 carries for 169 yards and one touchdown in 2012, and he has 1,022 yards on 244 career rushes for three touchdowns.

Pelissero said the Vikings will have to decide if his value as an insurance back is more than other teams would value him as more of a featured ball-carrier.

He could be trade bait once injuries start hitting in camp, depending on whether the Vikings have any intention of trying to convince him he'll get his shot with the Vikings eventually. Then again, they value him as a load-carrier if something happens to Peterson, and could take a compensatory pick if he walks anyway.

Gerhart, who turned 26 in March, will make $630,000 in 2013, according to Spotrac.com.

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