Originally posted on This Given Sunday  |  Last updated 12/12/12

From the very start of his exceptional career, Adrian Peterson has been compared to Hall of Fame running back Eric Dickerson. And now, as Peterson is shocking the football world with his best season yet less than a year after blowing out his knee, AP is setting his sights on Dickerson's most celebrated record.  Rather than focusing on becoming the seventh running back in NFL history to hit 2,000 yards (AP2K?), Peterson has said this week that he's targeting Dickerson's single-season rushing yards record of 2,105.  Let's break it down, first looking at what Peterson has to do to become the second-oldest back in NFL history to hit the 2,000-yard mark. He currently has 1,600 yards on the dot. To hit 2,000, he'll have to average 133.4 yards per game over the final three weeks. Technically, he's only on pace for 1,969 yards with an average of 123.1 yards per game. But that's not a strong indicator of Peterson's chances, because he only hit the 100-yard mark once in his first six games but has done so seven weeks in a row since then.  During that seven-week span, AP has averaged 157.3 yards per outing, and he's surpassed that 133.4 mark on five of those seven occasions.  The bad news is that even that pace isn't good enough to get him to Dickerson's record of 2,105. That would, instead, only get him to 2,071, which would be the second-highest single-season total in football history.  To break the record, Peterson will have to average 168.7 yards over the next three games. Even in the last three games, he's been short of that average at 157.3, and he's never had more yards in one three-game stretch than this recent one. But that total of 472 falls short of the 506 he'd have to accumulate in order to become the new single-season record holder. So statistically, the odds favor Peterson hitting 2,000 but falling short of 2,105.  A look at his final three opponents:  Week 15: At St. Louis -- The Rams have done a good job in recent weeks against guys like Frank Gore, C.J. Spiller and Fred Jackson. They rank 13th in the league in run defense but are tied for eighth in terms of yards allowed per rushing attempt. Week 16: At Houston -- Stevan Ridley, Shane Vereen and Joique Bell have recently had some success against a solid Houston defense, but the Texans shut down a fairly hot Chris Johnson in Week 13. They rank in the top 10 in terms of both rushing yards allowed per game and per carry. Week 17: Vs. Green Bay -- Peterson had an amazing 210-yard game against the Packers just two weeks ago, and this is a D that has also struggled lately with backs like Ahmad Bradshaw, Andre Brown, Mikel Leshoure and Bell. Green Bay ranks 15th in the league when it comes to rushing yards allowed per game, but they've surrendered a mediocre 4.5 yards per attempt.  Peterson could benefit greatly from the fact that all three of those games will be held indoors. The opposing defenses aren't easy, but I wouldn't rule anything out.

This article first appeared on This Given Sunday and was syndicated with permission.

MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Vikings don’t want Bridgewater playing on London field

Joe Mixon: ‘I can do way more’ than Le’Veon Bell with increased workload

Joe Thomas will reportedly miss rest of season with torn triceps

Are the Steelers going to give Martavis Bryant what he wants?

Fifteen biggest surprises so far in 2017-18 NBA season

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Top 10 storylines for 2017 World Series

Report: Nationals to interview Dave Martinez for manager job

Baldwin: Sideline spat with Cable was ‘100 percent my fault’

Elliott will play in Week 8 after judge denies request to expedite case

Genie Bouchard recalls SB bet during latest Pats-Falcons game

Biggest winners and losers from NFL Week 7

Path to the 2017 World Series - Houston Astros

MLS Decision Day: East to be a rumble while West up for grabs

Most prominent sports bans on the 5th anniversary of the Lance Armstrong ban

Sports & Politics Intersect: Cubs owner up for Heritage Foundation post

The 'Like Mike, only better' quiz

Three Up, Three Down: Dodgers finish Cubs while Astros find pain in the Bronx

The 'Some call me the Rocket, some people call me Maurice' quiz

Kyrie Irving must lead Celtics through a disaster in search for happiness

Jacoby Brissett: The forgotten up-and-comer

NFL Week 7 Predictions

The 'Can I have a quick sword with you?' quiz

College football 2017 Week 8 predictions

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Yardbarker Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

MLS Decision Day: East to be a rumble while West up for grabs

Most prominent sports bans on the 5th anniversary of the Lance Armstrong ban

Houston Astros hold off Yankees, forcing Game 7

Sports & Politics Intersect: Cubs owner up for Heritage Foundation post

The 'Like Mike, only better' quiz

Three Up, Three Down: Dodgers finish Cubs while Astros find pain in the Bronx

The 'Some call me the Rocket, some people call me Maurice' quiz

Kyrie Irving must lead Celtics through a disaster in search for happiness

Jacoby Brissett: The forgotten up-and-comer

NFL Week 7 Predictions

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker