This NFL season has been all about breaking records and reaching milestones.
Tom Brady joined the exclusive 500 touchdown club on Thursday and broke a record by throwing a touchdown to the 71st different player in his career. Drew Brees broke the all-time passing yards record Monday night and will soon (likely in Week 6) join Brady in the 500 touchdown club, too. Brees owns quite a few NFL records at this point.
And while those accomplishments are getting the most praise, there have been a number of interesting in-season records and milestones of note among offensive players.
- The NFL has already seen two ties this season and at least one game has gone to overtime in each of the first five weeks of the year. It’s the first time that a season has featured at least one overtime game in each of its first five weeks. The Cleveland Browns have played in overtime three times this season, tied with the 2002 Buffalo Bills, 1995 Indianapolis Colts, and 1987 Green Bay Packers for the most such games in a team’s first five games of a season since the overtime rule was instituted in 1974.
Way to go, Browns! Go get that record.
- After Week 5, Cleveland wide receiver Jarvis Landry has 429 career receptions in five seasons and surpassed Cardinals receiver Larry Fitzgerald (426 from 2004-08) for the most receptions by a player in his first five seasons in NFL history. The majority of Landry’s catches came while he was with the Dolphins from 2014-2017.
- The Rams’ offense has been dominating opponents, scoring 30 or more points in each of their first five games. Los Angeles is the fifth team to score at least 30 points in each of their first five games to start a season in NFL history, joining the 2013 Denver Broncos (eight consecutive games), 2007 New England Patriots (eight), 2000 St. Louis Rams (eight), and 2011 Patriots (five). The 2013 Broncos, 2011 Patriots, and 2007 Patriots all advanced to the Super Bowl, so if you’re placing a Super Bowl bet the Rams are probably a safe one to make.
- Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins completed 35 passes in Week 2, 40 passes in Week 3, 36 passes in Week 4, and 30 passes in Week 5. That made him the first player in NFL history to complete at least 30 passes in four consecutive games.
- The No. 1 recipient of Cousins’ passes is wide receiver Adam Thielen, who is the third player in NFL history with at least 100 receiving yards in each of his team’s first five games to start a season, joining Charley Hennigan of the Houston Oilers (seven games in 1961) and Bob Boyd of the Los Angeles Rams (five in 1954).
- Through Week 5, there have been 424 total touchdowns and 3,739 total points scored, both the most in NFL history through the first five weeks of a season. Rams running back Todd Gurley leads the league with nine touchdowns (seven rushing, two receiving), while Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes paces the NFL with 14 touchdown passes.
- Along those lines, quarterbacks combined for 8,126 net passing yards in Week 5, marking the third time the NFL eclipsed 8,000 net passing yards in a single week this season. In NFL history, only eight weeks have featured at least 8,000 net passing yards and no other season in league annals has had more than two such weeks.
- Rookies are doing work, too! Four rookie quarterbacks Josh Rosen (Cardinals), Josh Allen (Bills), Baker Mayfield (Browns), and Sam Darnold (Jets) were victorious in Week 5, marking the first time in the Super Bowl era that rookie quarterbacks went 4-0 in a single week. It looks like this rookie class of quarterbacks is as impressive as expected.
- Even kickers are making history! Panthers kicker Graham Gano’s 63-yard game-winner from Week 5 tied for the longest game-winning field goal in the fourth quarter or overtime in NFL history. New Orleans kicker Tom Dempsey converted a 63-yard field goal in the fourth quarter of the Saints’ 19-17 victory over Detroit on Nov. 8, 1970. Gano’s 63-yard field goal is tied for the second-longest in NFL history, trailing only Matt Prater, who converted a 64-yarder for the Denver Broncos on Dec. 8, 2013.
Notice what’s missing here? Any kind of defensive achievement. The NFL is turning into an offense-heavy league, as evidenced by the above statistics. Maybe at some point this year we’ll see some defensive milestones reached, but for now it’s all-things offense!