Is this the season for Nick Chubb, Kareem Hunt to each hit 1,000-yards?
The Cleveland Browns have the best running back duo in the NFL but can Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt each hit the 1,000-yard mark in 2021?
At this point, there’s no way to argue that any running back duo in the NFL is better than the Cleveland Browns one-two punch known as Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. Chubb has cemented himself as one of the best in the NFL with 3,557 yards in three seasons.
Hunt is no slouch either with 3,171 yards in four seasons including a 1,327-yard campaign as a rookie which led the NFL. He’s also an incredible receiver, which he showed off last season with 304 yards and five touchdowns in that area.
But what he was unable to do was hit the 1,000-yard mark even with Chubb missing four games. Hunt finished with 841 yards and six touchdowns on the ground which was less than the 1,067 yards and 12 touchdowns Chubb had.
Still, the question is again being asked if the two can both hit the 1,000-yard mark which would make them the first Browns pair to do so since Kevin Mack and Earnest Byner in 1985.
As for the rest of the NFL, the last running back dup to accomplish the feat was DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart with the Carolina Panthers in 2009 — with Williams running for 1,117 yards and Stewart putting up 1,133 — but it was just two years ago when a pair of teammates both hit the mark.
In 2019, the hated Baltimore Ravens had running back Mark Ingram run for 1,206 yards with quarterback Lamar Jackson running for 1,018.
Looking ahead to 2021, this season feels like one where Chubb and Hunt can actually hit the mark — and that’s something Mary Kay Cabot recently talked about as well. As she stated, they will have another game to accomplish the feat with the NFL extending the season to 17 games meaning they would need to average less than 60-yards per carry each.
"“The pair must average 58.8 yards per game this year to reach 1,000. Chubb averaged 88.9 yards last season, which would’ve totaled 1,422 over 16 games, enough for third in the NFL behind Tennessee’s Derrick Henry (2,027) and Minnesota’s Dalvin Cook (1,557). When Hunt led the league in rushing as a rookie, he averaged 82.9 per game, so 58.8 is a breeze if given the ball.” — Cabot, Cleveland.com"
Mary Kay went on to say that Hunt was at 52.5 yards per game last year and Chubb had 88.9. But the real question is whether or not the team sticks with the ground game. And the answer to that will most likely be a hard yes.
Kevin Stefanski truly likes to set the tone of the game with the run and Cleveland does boast one of the best — if not the best — offensive line in the NFL.
Sure, they will have Odell Beckham, Jr. back and also added a deep threat receiver in Anthony Schwartz, but Stefanski will still pound the ball first to open things up for the passing game.
Throw all that in with the extra game and this could be the perfect storm to get No. 24 and No. 27 into the NFL record books with a historic season.