4. Chris Johnson, 2009
Chris Johnson, while boasting a top five season all time for a running back, surprisingly only has one entry on this list. However, he had several great seasons for the Titans before declining at the end of his career with the Jets and Arizona Cardinals.
During Johnson’s six-year career with the Titans, he averaged 1,328 rushing yards, 334 receiving yards, and nearly 10 total touchdowns. He made the 2008 NFL All Rookie Team, was voted to the Pro Bowl three times, and was named First Team All-Pro once.
The year that makes the top five on this list was Johnson’s second year for the Titans, and it was a record breaking one. During that season, Johnson gained 2,006 rushing yards, 503 receiving yards, and 16 total touchdowns. He set and currently holds the all time record for yards from scrimmage in one season with 2,509. He was voted to the Pro Bowl, named First Team All-Pro, and received the NFL’s Offensive Player of the Year award. It was a special season for Johnson, the fans, and one for the record books.
NORMALIZED SEASON SCORE: 2645.06
3. Marshall Faulk, 2000
Needless to say, as it’s ranked higher, Faulk’s second season on this list was even more incredible. The 2000 season was the culmination of the “Greatest Show on Turf” in their defeat of the Titans on the one-yard line to claim the franchise’s last and only Super Bowl.
During this season, Faulk was incredible. As the key factor in the offense, Faulk had 1,359 rushing yards and 830 receiving yards. While his overall yards from scrimmage were lower than the previous year, he scored more than twice as many touchdowns with 26, setting the record for the time in total touchdowns in a season.
While Faulk didn’t score in the Super Bowl, he was undoubtedly a major factor in the team’s success that year. He’s arguably one of the greatest running backs of all time and his 2000 season is only surpassed by two others.
NORMALIZED SEASON SCORE: 2737.43
2. OJ Simpson, 1975
Simpson’s second entry on this list, and the one that garners him the runner-up spot to the greatest season of all time, is his 1975 season. This was actually a less decorated season for Simpson, as he didn’t win the NFL’s Offensive Player of the Year or the MVP. Both those awards were given to Fran Tarkenton of the Minnesota Vikings.
Even so, this was Simpson’s best year as a professional. He set a career high in yards from scrimmage with 1,817 rushing yards and 426 receiving yards, and nearly doubled his previous best of 12 total touchdowns with 23.
Up to that point, and not until 27 years later would a running back have a better season.
NORMALIZED SEASON SCORE: 2807.10