Sure, Philadelphia Eagles running back LeSean McCoy scampered through around and over the Washington Redskins en route to a 184-yard performance Monday night. But there still was a noticeable dearth of good run games in Week 1.
On average this week, NFL teams rushed for just under 94 yards per game, which is significantly down from the 115.9 yards per game averaged in 2012 and 116.94 yards per game averaged over the last five seasons.
Only two running backs in Week 1 topped the 100-yard mark (McCoy and the New England Patriots' Shane Vereen, who had 101 yards). In fact, before Monday night, it was a quarterback, Terrelle Pryor, who led the league with 112 yards on the ground. Just 11 teams broke the rushing barrier of 100 total yards.
It wasn't just that teams weren't running the ball -- not uncommon in today's NFL. Of those players who did receive more than 20 touches, only McCoy and DeMarco Murray (20 carries for 86 yards) averaged more that 3.3 yards per carry.
Many big-name backs in Week 1 had well under 70 rushing yards:
Doug Martin: 65 yards on 24 carries
Arian Foster: 57 yards on 18 carries
Matt Forte: 50 yards on 19 carries
Trent Richardson: 47 yards on 13 carries
Maurice Jones-Drew: 45 yards on 15 carries
Frank Gore: 44 yards on 21 carries
Marshawn Lynch: 43 yards on 17 carries
We could keep going, but you're probably aware -- based on your fantasy football scores.
Even when some numbers didn't look so bad, like Adrian Peterson's 93 yards on 18 carries, there was an undercutting statistic. After taking his first carry for a 78-yard touchdown, Peterson had just 15 yards on 17 rushes the rest of the game, including minus-8 yards the rest of the first half.
Part of it has to do with offenses focusing on the pass. But we shouldn't discount offensive line play. Not only are there some poor offensive lines, but many are built for the pass and struggle to open holes for running backs.
Teams combined for 8,143 net pass yards, most in ANY week in @nfl history. There were 63 TD passes, also most in ANY weekâ Randall Liu (@RLiuNFL) September 10, 2013
Just how bad was it for running backs in Week 1?
Philip Rivers' 18-yard errrr ... ummmm ... scamper bested the totals of LeGarrette Blount (15 yards), Chris Ivory (15), Ronnie Hillman (15), Mark Ingram (11), Isaac Redman (9) and others. And these players probably (sadly) were drafted in some of your fantasy leagues.