Coming out of Wisconsin, most Badgers fans knew the potential Jonathan Taylor had at the next level. However, even after an impressive combine, most NFL teams don’t spend high picks on running backs. The Indianapolis Colts got a steal in the second round with Taylor. After a good rookie campaign with flashes of superstar potential, Taylor has taken his game to the next level this season.
Jonathan Taylor had a historic day this afternoon against the league’s top defense. Taylor ran for a career high 32 carries for 185 yards and 4 touchdowns on the ground. Add in his 1 receiving touchdown and he becomes just the 18th player in NFL history to have five touchdowns in a game. Taylor is also the third-youngest player to have five touchdowns in a game and the third to do so in only 3 quarters. The Colts have done a fantastic job not overworking Taylor, having only eclipsed over 20 carries in a game twice. By keeping him fresh, they can lean on him when he has the hot hand.
Aside from today, Taylor is on pace to have a historical season at the running back position. With Derrick Henry dealing with a lengthy injury, Taylor jumped to atop the league in rushing yards. Taylor now leads the NFL in rushing touchdowns, rushing yards, and most runs of 20+ yards. Taylor also tied the great LaDainian Tomlinson with 8 straight games of 100+ scrimmage yards and a touchdown.
It’s not often that a running back wins the NFL’s MVP award, especially with how pass heavy the league has become. 2012, Minnesota’s Adrian Peterson was the last RB to win the award. Peterson put up an insane 2,097 rushing yards that season. The Colts started the year 1-4 and Taylor has been one of the main reasons for the success of this offense and the team. They have won 5 of their last 6. With no QB dominating the league right now, if the Colts keep winning and Taylor has a few more games like today, he has a shot at the MVP.