Poll Question – Handing Off Victory

It’s the fourth quarter, you’re up by 3 and seven minutes remaining. You need to milk the clock and close out the game without turning the ball over to your opponent. Who do you want taking your handoffs?

Jim Brown – Played nine seasons, went to nine Pro Bowls and won eight rushing titles. Named to both the 50th and 75th anniversary teams. Averaged 1,368 yards per season and 5.1 yards per carry.
Earl Campbell – Played eight seasons, went to five Pro Bowls and won three rushing titles. Averaged 1,175 yards per season and 4.3 yards per carry.

Emmitt Smith – The NFL’s all-time leading rusher. Carried the ball more times for more yards and more touchdowns than any player in NFL history. Eight Pro Bowls and four rushing titles in 15 seasons. Averaged 1,223 yards per season.
Walter Payton – Played 13 seasons, went to nine Pro Bowls and won one NFL rushing title and three other NFC crowns. Named to both the 1970s and 1980s all-decade teams. Averaged 1,286 yards per season and 4.4 per carry.


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1 Comment

  1. Rich Quodomine
    September 20, 2014

    If argument is “milk the clock”, you want Smith – as much as the Bills fan in me wants to scream. He was tough as nails, got tough yards all over the field, and my fave stat, fumbles per season (lost or not): 4 *per* season (61 over 15 seasons). Think of it this way: Everybody and his best friend knows that milking the clock involves Daryl Johnston plowing the field for Emmitt Smith. Presuming everyone is trying to play “rake the ball”, it’s one giant ball drill for 7 minutes. All of the others were more fumble prone: Brown (57/9 seasons = 6+), Campbell: (43/8 = 5+), Payton: (86/13 = 6+). Yes, you can make the argument that his career length extended the stats, but to me, it doesn’t change the reality that he was the most endurant great back in history. Not just longevity, but actually enduring blow after blow. The question wasn’t the greatest talent – that was Payton. It wasn’t most powerful, that’s Campbell. It wasn’t the most singly fearsome combination of power and speed: Brown. It was a question of winding down the clock, and to that you must take abuse, be able to follow blocks and know your talent around you, and above all, never fumble. For that reason, the pick is Smith.

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