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Adrian Peterson closes in on rushing record with huge day

December 16, 2012|By Michael Robinson
  • Adrian Peterson slips a tackle against the Rams on Sunday.
Adrian Peterson slips a tackle against the Rams on Sunday. (Dilip Vishwanat / Getty…)

Adrian Peterson took a giant leap toward Eric Dickerson's rushing record Sunday, pounding the St. Louis Rams for 212 rushing yards, including an 82-yard touchdown.

The Minnesota Vikings running back now has 1,812 yards on the ground this season, topping his previous career high of 1,760. He is now just 294 yards away from the single-season rushing record.

Last week Peterson told Peter King of Sports Illustrated that he was eyeing the record of 2,105 yards set by Dickerson in 1984. At the time he needed 506 yards (169 yards per game). After today's outburst he will need to average 147 yards over the final two games to achieve his goal.

How good has he been of late? The sixth-year back out of Oklahoma has exactly as many rushing yards (1,313) in his last eight games as Houston Texans superstar running back Arian Foster has the entire season.

The Vikings kept their playoffs hopes alive with a 36-22 victory over the Rams. They will take on Foster and the Texans next week and close out the season against the Green Bay Packers the week after that.

The Texans were the No. 2 rushing defense in the NFL heading into Sunday, limiting opponents to 90.8 rushing yards per game. The Packers were a little more giving, allowing 116.7 yards per game — good for 15th in the NFL. As if it really matters. Peterson has been nearly unstoppable the second half of this season.

ALSO:

NFL Roundup: Green Bay clinches NFC North with win over Bears

Farmer: Eric Dickerson pegs Adrian Peterson as MVP

Could Adrian Peterson be an alien from outer space?

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