Los Angeles Angels first baseman Albert Pujols had to go and ruin my latest prediction about him, suffering a foot injury that will most likely keep him out for the rest of the season. Hopefully I am not placing any bad luck or misfortune on Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson when I make not one, but two predictions about him this season
Peterson made two bold-but-unlikely predictions when he said he plans to rush for 2,500 yards this season and break Emmitt Smith’s NFL record of 18,355 career rushing yards in Week 16 of the 2017 season. While I believe he has extremely slim chances to accomplish those milestones in their respective time frames, there are still two milestones I believe Peterson will reach this season: he will join the 10,000 career rushing yards club and reach the top 20 on the NFL career rushing yards list.
While the 10,000 career rushing yards club doesn’t have the same ring to it as MLB’s 500 Home Run Club, it is still a major milestone in Peterson’s career, and it is one that he, barring an injury, will easily reach this season. Peterson currently has 8,849 career rushing yards, needing only 1,151 rushing yards to reach the 10,000-yard rushing plateau. He would need to average just under 72 rushing yards per game – 71.9375, to be exact – to join the other 27 members in the club.
Peterson must first join that club before he can reach the top 20 on the career rushing yards list. He is currently in the No. 33 slot on the list and would need to rush for 1,795 yards to surpass Ricky Watters, averaging just over 112 rushing yards per game – 112.1875, to be exact – to take sole possession of the No. 20 slot on the list. He has only averaged more than 112 rushing yards per game once in his career – last season, averaging 131.1 rushing yards per game – but came close when he averaged 110.0 rushing yards per game in the 2008 season. However, a rejuvenated Peterson will race to the top 20 on the list in either Week 16 or 17 this season.
In my opinion, Peterson will reach both milestones this season. And while some may be wondering whether Peterson will become the first running back to record two seasons of 2,000-plus rushing yards, well, that’s a story for another day.