In nearly helping his team make history, Najee Harris was able to make history of his own during the Pittsburgh Steelers' 36-28 loss to the Minnesota Vikings on Thursday night. During the game, Pittsburgh's running back broke Le'Veon Bell's rookie franchise record for most total yards gained in a season. Harris has 1,270 all-purpose yards in 13 games this season. Bell amassed 1,259 yards in the same amount of games during his rookie season back in 2013.
As you can see below, Harris' numbers through 13 games are nearly identical to the numbers Bell put up during his rookie campaign.
|Rushing yards||Yards per carry||Receiving yards||Total yards||Total touchdowns|
Pittsburgh's highest-drafted running back since the Steelers selected Bell in the second round of the 2013 draft, Harris has the potential to mimic the success Bell had during his time with the Steelers. Harris has displayed the same level of versatility this season, as he is currently second behind former college teammate Jaylen Waddle for the most receptions among rookies.
Harris put up solid numbers during Thursday night's loss to the Vikings. For the first time this season, Harris caught and ran for scores while rushing for 94 yards on 20 carries. Harris' play in the second half was a key contributor to the Steelers nearly pulling off what would have been the largest comeback in NFL history. After falling behind 29-0, the Steelers trailed 36-28 before Ben Roethlisberger's end zone pass to Pat Freiermuth on the game's final play fell incomplete.
Barring injury, Harris will pass Hall of Fame running back Franco Harris for the franchise rookie record for rushing yards. Franco Harris rumbled for 1,055 yards in a 14-game regular season back in 1972. Harris capped off his sensational rookie season by recording the "Immaculate Reception" that propelled Pittsburgh to its first-ever playoff victory.