Remember when The Hulk went as Adrian Peterson for Halloween?
AP faces the Green Bay Packers this afternoon with history on the line. Should Peterson rush for 208 yards or more — which would be his third game of 200+ yards in the past five — he would set the single-season rushing record, breaking Eric Dickerson’s 28-year reign of 2,105 yards.
Oh, side note: If the Minnesota Vikings win today, they finish the season 10-6 and earn a playoff berth. Not bad for a team that went 3-13 last season.
All-time records are great and all — playoff berths, even better — but if AP’s career ended today, we’d be left with an extensive catalog of big plays and even bigger hits. Here’s the five best plays of his career:
1. Trucks Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback William Gay, screams (2009)
Normally a reserved guy, AP’s scream at the 0:23 mark will haunt the Gay family for generations to come.
2. Treats the Cleveland Browns like the Cleveland Browns (2009)
It’s like watching the overaggressive dad shuck every kid in the neighborhood. Take it easy, man.
3. Bored by the St. Louis Rams’ eight-man front; rambles 82 yards for TD (2012)
Everyone in Missouri knows AP is getting the ball on 1st and 10 from the MIN 18. The Rams put eight in the box. Eighty-two yards later, the Rams defense can only be described as well-intentioned.
4. Avoids sideline to punish Green Bay Packers cornerback Al Harris (2008)
The tragic thing is Harris had perfect tackling form. Peterson cares not for defensive fundamentals.
5. Stuffed at the line — for a 13-yard gain against the Arizona Cardinals (2012)
Peterson’s always been a famine-famine-feast running back. But perhaps no play is more exemplary of his non-stop engine. Dude runs until he absolutely cannot run anymore, as what looks like 18 Cardinals found out the hard way.