Adrian Peterson has set his sights on breaking Emmitt Smith’s all-time rushing record and he told Dan Wiederer of the Star-Tribune that he will break the mark during the 2017 season.
That is a bold declaration and would require Peterson to rush for 18,356 in just 11 seasons. It took Smith 15 seasons to gain 18,355 yards. Smith also had a head start, starting his NFL career at age 21, a year younger than Peterson was in his rookie campaign.
Peterson is nearly half-way to Smith’s mark, with 8,849 yards in just six seasons but is still 1,311 yards behind Smith at the same age.
If Peterson is going to catch Smith in 2017, he will need to average 1,902 yards per season over the next five years (see chart below). Even with Peterson’s remarkable healing ability, it is a lot to expect of a running back in the modern NFL…
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