2013 NFL Power Rankings, Week 15 Edition
While he's not likely to play in Week 15, it appears that Vikings running back Adrian Peterson dodged a bullet with his foot injury.
It's not the dreaded Lisfranc variety, but it would only make sense for the Vikings to not rush back their stud running back as they have no chance at a postseason bid.
And even though Toby Gerhart is dealing with a hamstring injury himself, he figures to get a heavy workload on Sunday assuming he plays and AP doesn't.
[For a list of players like Gerhart to potentially add, check out our Week 15 waiver-wire post.]
Each week, our contributors answer a roundtable type of question and this one involves Peterson, who recently surpassed the 10,000-yard milestone, and where he'll finish on the all-time rushing list.
Here are the top 10 all-time leading rushers plus both active running backs with 10,000-plus yards:
When it's all said and done, will Adrian Peterson break the all-time rushing record held by Emmitt Smith?
Kevin Hanson (follow on Twitter):
If there is an active running back that can break the record, I'd say that guy is Peterson. That said, I don't think he will break the record.
The difference between Smith's and Peterson's total rushing yards is currently 8,285 yards. Assuming that Peterson averages 80.8 rushing yards per game for the remainder of his career, it would take 103 more games to beat Smith's record. That is roughly six-and-a-half seasons and Peterson will turn 29 years old in March.
I used 80.8 YPG since that is his career low up to this point and while I think he will continue to average more than that over the next couple of seasons, eventually his age will catch up to him even if he appears to be superhuman now. Even if he managed to maintain his current career YPG average, it would take him more than five seasons to break the record.
With all that said, I expect Peterson to surpass Sanders' total and finish in the top three all-time and with a much higher yards-per-carry average than either Smith or Payton.
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John Trifone (follow on Twitter):
The all-time rushing record is one that Adrian Peterson has already expressed an interest in breaking. He has even given himself a timetable for when he expects to accomplish it by. I'm going to say he gets it.
Injuries can always change everything, but if he stays healthy enough, Peterson is certainly one of the best the game has ever seen. His historic season last year, coming off a torn ACL, shows his will power and determination, as well as the fact that even an ACL tear wasn't going to slow him down.
Given that it's something he has his eye on, I'm not going to bet against Adrian Peterson.
Dan Yanotchko (follow on Twitter):
Although he is not having another year for the ages, Adrian Peterson is at it again, as he is still the most feared running back in the NFL. Adrian Peterson will certainly break the all-time rushing record by Emmitt Smith, and I think he will do so pretty convincingly.
Peterson is currently at 10,070, and the record held by Smith is at 18,355 yards. Peterson is still a young 28 years old, and also he rushed for 2,000 plus yards coming of ACL surgery last year. Although Peterson will not average 2,000 yards per year, I think that he will reach the record milestone in five seasons, and won't have to go to Arizona to pad his stats either.