Bears running back Matt Forte is feeling unappreciated by the Bears, but every NFL fan should appreciate what Forte is doing this season. Forte leads the league in yards from scrimmage, but his season has been even more impressive than that sounds.
With 527 rushing yards and 381 receiving yards, Forte is on pace for 1,405 rushing yards and 1,016 receiving yards. Roger Craig (1985) and Marshall Faulk (1999) are the only other players in NFL history to top 1,000 yards both rushing and receiving in the same season.
But Craig and Faulk were playing in two of the best offenses the game of football has ever seen. Forte is having an amazing season in a mediocre offense: The Bears are right in the middle of the league, ranked No. 16 in total offense with 1,967 yards this season.
Below we have the list of the Top 10 players in the NFL in total yards from scrimmage, but we’ve added another number — the percent of the team’s offense that each player in the Top 10 has accounted for this season.
1. Matt Forte: 908 yards, 46.2 percent of the Bears’ offense
2. Fred Jackson: 880 yards, 38.7 percent of the Bills’ offense
3. Wes Welker: 804 yards, 28.2 percent of the Patriots’ offense
4. Darren McFadden: 761 yards, 34.0 percent of the Raiders’ offense
5. Ray Rice: 700 yards, 38.1 percent of the Ravens’ offense
6. LeSean McCoy: 692 yards, 26.1 percent of the Eagles’ offense
7. Jahvid Best: 677 yards, 30.7 percent of the Lions’ offense
8. Steve Smith: 675 yards, 26.9 percent of the Panthers’ offense
9. Ryan Mathews: 674 yards, 32.4 percent of the Chargers’ offense
10. Maurice Jones-Drew: 647 yards, 41.4 percent of the Jaguars’ offense
As you can see, Forte is responsible for a far larger share of his team’s offense than any of the league’s other leaders in yards from scrimmage. He’s right to believe he deserves to be paid like an elite running back.