Adrian Peterson, Tom Johnson

New Orleans Saints running back Adrian Peterson runs from Minnesota Vikings defensive tackle Tom Johnson (92) during the first half of an NFL football game, Monday, Sept. 11, 2017, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Bruce Kluckhohn) ORG XMIT: MNCN102

Bruce Kluckhohn

Adrian Peterson can laugh now at some of the memes that popped up on the Internet after a sideline exchange between the veteran running back and head coach Sean Payton

One in particular, depicting Peterson as Denzel Washington's character from Training Day, still gets the running back laughing. 

But the furor that erupted over the exchange disturbed Peterson, who was bothered enough by the speculation in the game's aftermath that he tweeted at SportsCenter to clarify that he told Payton "we need to run it up their (expletive)."

"It was definitely overdramatized," Peterson said. "Of course, with the heat of the game, me being back in Minnesota and things like that, just catching that look – that intense look on my face, like I had – I actually got some laughs out of some of the memes that were made."

Peterson said he and Payton understood what was going on perfectly. 

"Me and him were on the same page," Peterson said. "We knew exactly what was said within that exchange."

Peterson played just nine snaps in the season opener, in large part because the Saints fell behind at the half and went to the passing game in an effort to catch up to Minnesota's offense. 

For a player who is accustomed to taking the majority of the snaps at running back, the lack of work was hard to process at first, although Peterson knew he'd be splitting time with Mark Ingram and Alvin Kamara when he signed with New Orleans this offseason.

Peterson believes it will just take some time for the running back situation to sort itself out. 

"I didn’t sign up for nine snaps, though, but unfortunately that’s the way the game played out," Peterson said. "In my mind, personally, I knew it was gonna take some adjusting. You know, me and Mark played in the last preseason game, AK didn’t even play that game. So with all three of us being out there, I knew it would take a game or so to kind of get adjusted."

Follow Joel A. Erickson on Twitter, @JoelAErickson.