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Who has the best rushing stats in the NFL so far this season?


Sport used to be incredibly simple, both to watch and to understand. In soccer, the only statistic that was ever really important for years and years was the result. Whoever scored the most amount of goals would win the game. Nothing more, nothing less. People liked it this way because they could disengage their brains for a few hours, with only basic counting skills required.

Who has the best rushing stats in the NFL so far this season?

Over time, this simplicity has begun to change. Soon, things like distance covered, tackles made and long passes attempted began to be measured. Then, we could tell which players were working the hardest, and when they were having a great all-round game. No longer were goals the only metric to measure players, now fans and journalists had new data to look at and compare.

Soon, clubs were employing their own analysts. They began to look at even more stats, to evaluate where their players could improve, and what their squads were missing. Soon, recruitment began to be based on analytical methods, instead of simply if a manager liked a player. It became a much more technical sport. Some people love having all these statistics and figures, such as xG (expected goals), whereas some fans hated that the sport had moved away from its simpler origins.

It isn’t just in soccer where we’ve seen this change. A famous example is in baseball, where the Oakland Athletics built a new squad following the idea of ‘Moneyball’. Under GM Billy Beane, they used the Moneyball technique, going on an unprecedented winning streak having sold all their best players and replaced them with unfashionable yet statistically consistent players. They did this because they could never financially compete with the bigger sides, so had to find marginal gains elsewhere. While Beane and the A’s didn’t quite make it, the Boston Red Sox used a similar method to win their first World Series in nearly 90 years.

The NFL has certainly become more technical in recent years. No longer is it purely about throwing and catching or knocking players down. All sorts of figures are analysed, so coaches can focus their plays on certain areas, and recruit players because of certain attributes. Having a great arm, being able to tackle or dodge upcoming players is still important, but now the sport is about so much more than these simple things.

One such stat that coaches (both real and fantasy) lookout for are rushing yards. Rushing yards are a statistic that records the total number of yards gained by a player (pretty much always a Running Back) when they are carrying the ball, as a result of a rushing play, so not when the ball is thrown downfield by a quarterback. Rushing yards are one of the key NFL lines online betters look for when betting on the sport, so are clearly an important part of the game. Let’s have a look at some of the players who have the best rushing stats in the NFL, and who might be on top come the end of the season.


Top of the charts in 2020

To figure out who might have the best rushing stats in this season’s NFL, it makes sense to turn the clocks back a few months, to see who came out on top in the 2020 campaign. Derrick Henry, a running back for the Tennessee Titans was the most successful in this department, as he managed 17 rushing touchdowns, more than any other player in the league. Not only that, but he was also at the top of the number of rushing yards made. His total of 2027 yards was almost 500 more than the next player, Dalvin Cook of the Minnesota Vikings. Incidentally, Henry also topped the charts for rushing touchdowns in the 2019 season as well, so clearly he is one to watch for fantasy team managers out there.

Other players of note last season were Nick Chubb of the Clevland Browns and Aaron Jones of the Green Bay Packers. Chubb rushed an average of 88.92 yards per game, with 12 rushing touchdowns, while Jones managed 9 touchdowns, with an average of 78,86 yards per game.

Who will come out on top this year?

We are only at the very early stage of this year’s NFL season, so it is quite hard to tell. You expect the likes of Henry, Cook, Chubb and Jones to be up near the top again if they have good seasons. After the first round of fixtures, Joe Mixon is on top with 127 yards made in one game, also making a touchdown in the Cincinnati Bengals game against the Vikings.

Will he be able to replicate this good start against the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Jacksonville Jaguars in the Bengal’s next two games? We’ll all have to tune in to find out.


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