Look, if NFL owners get their way and there's an 18-game season sometime in the future, just forget this blog ever happened. I mean, I'm sure there were bloggers all over the joint back in 1976 saying, "Know which record's never gonna fall? The Juice getting 2,003 in '73. And you know what, when I think of O.J. Simpson I think America's gota real role model there!" And then the NFL expanded its season to 16 games in 1978 and, six years later, down went O.J.'s record (10 years after that, down went O.J.'s life and reputation). It was trampled by the Rec-Spec goggled, neckroll-wearing Eric Dickerson. He went for 2,105 yards in 1984 and the closest contender since was Jamal Lewis (2,066 in 2003). The only other recent attack was lodged by Chris Johnson in 2009 when he ran for 2,006. And I just don't see how this record's going to fall in a 16-game season. Not with the league trending further and further to a pass-first, pass-second, run-third league. Check the list of single-season rushing leaders on the indispensable website Pro Football Reference. Lewis and Johnson are the only players since 1998 (Terrell Davis, 2,008) to come within 100 yards of Dickerson's record. And there have only been six 2,000 yard seasons in NFL history (Barry Sanders had 2,053 in 1997). In terms of on-field statistics - not coaching longevity or career wins -- I think Dickerson's record is the toughest one to break. What do you people think? And if you're curious, the highest Patriots on the single-season rushing records list are Corey Dillon (44th with 1,635 in 2004), Curtis Martin (83rd with 1,487 in 1995) and Craig James (247th, 1,225 in 1985).
Will anyone break Dickerson's record?
March 1, 2012, 4:22 am