MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — If NFL star Adrian Peterson is allowed to return to the Minnesota Vikings this season, the reunion won't happen swiftly.

The NFL formally began a review of the running back's case for potential punishment under the league's personal conduct policy. The NFL informed Peterson on Thursday that his status on paid leave from the Vikings will not change until completion of the process.

"The NFL has requested that Peterson submit relevant information regarding his case and meet with designated experts who will make recommendations for the commissioner's consideration," spokesman Brian McCarthy said. "Peterson also will have the opportunity to have a hearing prior to the issuance of any discipline."

Peterson pleaded no contest in Texas on Tuesday to misdemeanor reckless assault, down from a felony charge of child abuse for disciplining his 4-year-old son with a branch. He received what's essentially two years of probation, plus a $4,000 fine and requirement to complete parenting classes and 80 hours of community service.

"Adrian wants to get on with his life and have his relationship with his son and get back to playing football," Peterson's attorney, Rusty Hardin, said after the plea agreement was reached to avoid a trial or any jail time for the 29-year-old.

The Vikings are in their bye week, scheduled to reconvene for practice on Monday. They play next at Chicago on Nov. 16.

With only seven games left on the schedule, the timeline is tight for a return. Commissioner Roger Goodell was excoriated for his initial leniency in the caught-on-camera knockout punch Baltimore running back Ray Rice threw at his now-wife. The league boss will be under intense scrutiny for how he handles any punishment for Peterson.