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Vikings linebacker Chad Greenway intent on playing one more season

Minnesota Vikings linebacker Chad Greenway (52) breaks up a pass intended for New York Giants tight end Will Tye (45) during the third quarter at TCF Bank Stadium. The Vikings defeated the Giants 49-17. (Reuters photo)

MINNEAPOLIS -- There's no way linebacker Chad Greenway wants to retire after the way things ended Sunday.

The Vikings lost 10-9 to Seattle in a wild-card playoff game at TCF Bank Stadium when Blair Walsh missed a 27-yard field goal with 22 seconds remaining. Greenway, who turns 33 on Tuesday, then said he's determined to come back for an 11th season.

"I'm going to play football," said Greenway, who will be a free agent. "I've got to play one more year. It just can't seem to end like this. It's a hard one right now."

The team's longest-tenured player hopes to return to the Vikings. Greenway, who took a $3 million pay cut to return this season with a $4 million deal, didn't want to go into specifics about how that could happen.

"I haven't really thought that far," Greenway said. "Who knows what's going to happen? Obviously, there's offseason decisions, but it just doesn't seem like the immediacy of this ends right now. ... This football team shouldn't be going home right now, and that's hard. ... There's enough football left in me to play another season and try to go out differently."

Greenway, who was taken in the first round of the 2006 draft and missed his first year because of injury, has been a starter since he first took the field for the Vikings in 2007. This season he had a reduced role that included coming out on passing downs when the Vikings were at full strength.

Greenway talked before the season as if it might be his last.

He is Minnesota's nominee for Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year, based on community service.

Running back Adrian Peterson has been a good friend of Greenway's since entering the NFL in 2007. He said it "feels good" to hear the news the linebacker wants to play another year.

"Him leaving out in this fashion is not what I would want for him," Peterson said. "So he deserves more. He has brought a lot of leadership and just hard work and just that warrior mentality to this organization. That's my brother, and I love him. When I'm out there fighting, he's one of the guys that I'm doing it for. ... We need him around."

The Pioneer Press is in a media partnership with Forum News Service.