Playoff berths will be at stake this weekend as the NFL enters its final week of the season, but a number of the league’s finest players will also be looking to make an impact in the history books.
This past week, Detroit wide receiver Calvin Johnson secured a slot in the record books. The six-year veteran caught 11 balls for 225 yards, giving him 1,892 receiving yards on the season. That figure eclipses the single-season mark for most receiving yards (1,848 yards), set by Jerry Rice of the San Francisco 49ers in 1995. Johnson has one more game to pad those numbers some more.
This weekend, Johnson may well be joined on the list of record breakers. Casino Review takes a look at some of the record breaking questions on tap ahead of Week 17.
Will Adrian Peterson break the single-season rushing record?
Minnesota running back Adrian Peterson has had an outstanding season. Recovering from ACL and MCL surgery, Peterson has ran for 1,898 yards, leading the Vikings to an unlikely 9-6 record and the verge of the playoffs. Peterson is second favorite to Peyton Manning in the MVP stakes.
This weekend, Peterson – taken in the same draft as Johnson – will look to break the single-season record for rushing yards.
Heading into play on Sunday, Peterson is 207 yards behind the record (2,105 yards) set by Los Angeles Rams running back Eric Dickerson in 1984. Securing 208 yards or more will be a tough task, but Peterson has already run for 210 yards against the Green Bay Packers, Minnesota’s opponents this weekend. Still, oddsmakers don’t like Peterson’s chances.
Bovada Odds: Yes +300, No -500
Will J.J. Watt break the single-season record for sacks?
On the defensive side of the football, Houston defensive end J.J. Watt is within touching distance of an 11-year-old record.
With 20.5 sacks this season, Watt needs two sacks against the Indianapolis Colts this weekend to tie or 2.5 sacks to surpass New York Giants legend Michael Strahan for the most sacks recorded in a single season. Strahan set the record in 2001.
Watt has had an outstanding season, and is considered by some as the MVP of the Houston Texans. That’s saying something on a team that has seen Matt Schaub and Arian Foster both excel this season.
Like Peterson, oddsmakers don’t like Watts’ chances, but there is one thing well worth considering. Two weeks ago, Watt registered three sacks against the Colts, the team he faces this week.
Bovada Odds: Yes +200, No -300
Will Russell Wilson break the record for touchdown passes by a rookie?
Finally, Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson will look to ensure that his name is set firmly alongside the likes of Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III in Rookie of the Year conversations by doing something neither of his counterparts as.
With 25 passing touchdowns this season, Wilson sits just one behind Peyton Manning for most touchdowns thrown by a rookie. Manning threw 26 touchdowns in his debut season in 1998. Wilson needs two on Sunday against St. Louis to surpass that record.
Against the Rams in Week 4, Wilson threw no touchdowns and three picks. The Seahawks that take to the field on Sunday is very different to that side, with Wilson having thrown 17 touchdowns over the last eight games, including four last weekend against the 49ers.
Oddsmakers like Wilson’s chances against a St. Louis side that has been less than impressive this year.
Success for Wilson would have the rookie standing firmly alongside Andrew Luck, who passed Cam Newton’s record – set last year – for most yards by a rookie in a single-season last weekend.
Bovada Odds: Yes -175, No +135