Adrian Peterson had 861 rushing yards in December, the most any player has ever gained in any month in NFL history. So it’s not exactly a surprise that he was chosen as the NFC’s offensive player of the month.
But while the honor isn’t surprising, the production Peterson had in December was stunning. To illustrate just how great Peterson’s December was, consider this: Of the 32 NFL teams, 14 of them didn’t have a single player rush for 861 yards for the entire season. Here’s a list of players who were the leading rushers on their teams who had fewer yards for the entire season than Peterson had in December:
LeSean McCoy, Eagles, 840 yards
Vick Ballard, Colts, 814 yards
Michael Turner, Falcons, 800 yards
Mikel Leshoure, Lions, 798 yards
DeAngelo Williams, Panthers, 737 yards
Willis McGahee, Broncos, 731 yards
Darren McFadden, Raiders, 707 yards
Ryan Mathews, Chargers, 707 yards
DeMarco Murray, Cowboys, 663 yards
Jonathan Dwyer, Steelers, 623 yards
Mark Ingram, Saints, 602 yards
Alex Green, Packers 464 yards
Maurice Jones-Drew, Jaguars, 414 yards
LaRod Stephens-Howling, Cardinals, 357 yards
Peterson’s December would have made him the leading rusher on nearly half the teams in the league, including the two teams that have home-field advantage throughout the conference playoffs.
In five December games, Peterson had 210, 154, 212, 86 and 199 yards, and he was the biggest reason the Vikings rode a four-game winning streak to the playoffs. Now the Vikings will hope they can ride Peterson to another four-game winning streak in the postseason.