November 3, 2014

Highlighted Year: Karim Abdul-Jabbar, 1997

Running Back, Miami Dolphins

Age: 23
2nd season in pro football & with Dolphins
College: UCLA
Height: 5’10” Weight: 194

Abdul-Jabbar set a season rushing record at UCLA with 1571 yards in 1995 and was chosen by the Dolphins in the third round of the ‘96 NFL draft. Appearing tentative during preseason, he drew the ire of Head Coach Jimmy Johnson, but Abdul-Jabbar ran for 115 yards in the season-opening game and went on to become the team’s first thousand-yard rusher since 1978 as he gained 1116 yards on 307 carries (3.6 avg.) and scored 11 touchdowns. While having good balance, he did not accelerate quickly and lacked breakaway potential.

1997 Season Summary
Appeared in all 16 games
[Bracketed numbers indicate league rank in Top 20]

Attempts – 283 [9]
Most attempts, game – 26 (for 83 yds.) vs. Buffalo 11/17
Yards – 892 [19]
Most yards, game – 108 yards (on 22 carries) at Baltimore 10/19
Average gain – 3.2
TDs – 15 [1, tied with Terrell Davis]
100-yard rushing games – 2

Pass Receiving
Receptions – 29
Most receptions, game – 6 (for 60 yds.) vs. New England 12/22
Yards – 261
Most yards, game – 60 (on 6 catches) vs. New England 12/22
Average gain – 9.0
TDs – 1

TDs – 16 [1]
Points – 96 [20, tied with Terrell Davis]

Postseason: 1 G (AFC Wild Card playoff at New England)
Rushing attempts – 5
Rushing yards – 16
Average gain rushing – 3.2
Rushing TDs – 0

Dolphins went 9-7 to finish second in the AFC East and qualify for the postseason as a Wild Card entry. Lost AFC Wild Card playoff to New England Patriots (17-3).

Abdul-Jabbar rushed for 960 yards in 1998 but, after scoring 27 touchdowns in his first two seasons (26 on the ground), his total dropped to six. He was traded to Cleveland during the ’99 season and ran for 350 yards in 10 games for the reconstituted Browns franchise. Moving on to the Colts in 2000, he appeared in just one game as wear on his knees ended his career after just five years. Overall, he gained 3411 yards on 1004 rushing attempts (3.4 avg.) and caught 90 passes for 586 yards (6.5 avg.), scoring a total of 35 touchdowns. Controversy surrounding similarities to basketball great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar led to a lawsuit and a change of name to Abdul-Karim al-Jabbar.


Highlighted Years features players who were consensus first-team All-League* selections or league* or conference** leaders in the following statistical categories:

Rushing: Yards, TDs (min. 10)
Passing: Yards, Completion Pct., Yards per Attempt, TDs, Rating
Receiving: Catches, Yards, TDs (min. 10)
Scoring: TDs, Points, Field Goals (min. 5)
All-Purpose: Total Yards
Defense: Interceptions, Sacks
Kickoff Returns: Average
Punt Returns: Average
Punting: Average

*Leagues include NFL (1920 to date), AFL (1926), AFL (1936-37), AAFC (1946-49), AFL (1960-69), WFL (1974-75), USFL (1983-85)

**NFC/AFC since 1970

No comments:

Post a Comment