"Big plays equal points in this league," says Green Bay Packers head coach Mike McCarthy.
One of the biggest momentum changers in the NFL is a long touchdown. Not only does it put points on the board, but it can change the direction of the game.
"Making big plays to help the team is what I dream about," says Minnesota running back ADRIAN PETERSON, who had a 60-yard touchdown run last week in the Vikings' 34-27 win over Pittsburgh at London's Wembley Stadium. "A big run at a key moment can swing the momentum of a game."
Peterson, the 2012 NFL MVP, has 12 career touchdown runs of at least 60 yards, the most in NFL history.
"I was just being patient and letting the holes open up for me," says Peterson about his latest 60-yard touchdown run. "I was able to press it and cut it back and then take it to the house. I have to give thanks to those guys up front. They were the ones that made it happen, as well as the receivers blocking down the field. It was a big momentum shift for us."
Most 60+ Yard TD Runs in NFL History
|Player||Team(s)||Years||60+ Yard TD Runs|
|Source: NFL *Active|
|Ahman Green||Seattle, Green Bay, Houston||1998-2009||7|
Minnesota wide receiver Greg Jennings had a 70-yard touchdown reception last week, the seventh TD catch of at least 70 yards in his career. He is tied with the New York Giants' VICTOR CRUZ for the most 70+ yard touchdown receptions among active players.
"Greg made plays all game and he does a tremendous job with the run after the catch," says Vikings quarterback MATT CASSEL about Jennings' performance in Week 4. "He's strong with the ball and runs after the catch."
Cruz, who had a 69-yard touchdown catch last week against Kansas City, had a 70-yard receiving TD in Week 1 versus Dallas. In his career, he has seven touchdown receptions of at least 70 yards as well as a 68- and 69-yarder.
"Any time I get a chance to get the ball, I want to make the big play," says Cruz. "I am just trying to do the most I can when I catch the ball."
Since the 1970 merger, Jennings and Cruz are among the seven players with at least seven touchdown receptions of 70+ yards. Pro Football Hall of Famer JERRY RICE has the most in the NFL during that span with nine. Most 70+ Yard Rec TDs Since 1970
|Player||Team(s)||Years||70+ Yard Rec TDs|
|Source: NFL *Active|
|Jerry Rice||San Francisco, Oakland, Seattle||1985-2004||9|
|James Lofton||Green Bay, LA Raiders, Buffalo, LA Rams, Philadelphia||1978-1993||8|
|Terrell Owens||San Francisco, Philadelphia, Dallas, Buffalo, Cincinnati||1996-2010||8|
|Wesley Walker||New York Jets||1977-1989||8|
|Victor Cruz*||New York Giants||2010-2013||7|
|Greg Jennings*||Green Bay, Minnesota||2006-2013||7|
|John Taylor||San Francisco||1987-1995||7|