Adrian Peterson, 35, has no intentions of retiring from the NFL anytime soon and has his eyes on Emmitt Smith’s No. 1 spot as football’s all-time leading rusher. The Lions running back said he wants to play until he is in his 40s.
“I want to set the bar at a different level,” Peterson said in an interview with TMZ. “I want to literally be a 40-year-old back out there rushing for 1,500 yards and amazing people still.”
Peterson hasn’t rushed for 1,500 yards since his absurd 2012 MVP campaign when he racked up 2,097 yards on the ground but he did come close in 2015 when he had 1,485 rushing yards on the year. Still, it would be difficult for any player—let alone a soon-to-be 36-year-old come March—to rush for that mark.
Peterson also touched on the fact that he is currently fifth on the all-time rushing list and has aspirations of passing Smith as the undisputed rushing champ. Peterson is sitting at 14,820 yards for his career while Smith is alone on the mountain top at 18,355.
To reach that mark by 40, Peterson would have to average 707 yards a game through the next five seasons. If he were to somehow average 1,500 yards going forward, he’d be on top of the mountain by the middle of the 2023 season.
Peterson said he’ll continue to chase his first championship and acknowledged that in the process he could pass the Cowboys legend.