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Six examples of historically elite 2020 performances from remaining playoff teams

Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA; Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) throws a pass against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the second quarter at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Postseason success usually shapes the lasting narratives and storylines from any given NFL season. Still, that doesn’t mean we can’t pay homage to some of the year’s best units regardless of whether they manage to bring home the Lombardi Trophy. What follows are six positional groups and/or players that put forward a truly historic effort during the 2020 season, listed in no particular order.

This Ravens rushing attack is absolutely filthy

Lamar Jackson has truly spearheaded one of the most special rushing attacks the NFL has ever seen. The Ravens have rushed for 100 yards in 39 consecutive regular season games since Jackson took over under center in Week 11, 2018. The only longer streak in NFL history is the Steelers (43 games) from 1974-1977.

Jackson himself is already making a strong case as the best rushing QB ever. He already has 10 games with at least 100 rushing yards; Mike Vick (11) is the only other QB in NFL history with more than four such performances (including playoffs). The eye test is somehow even more absurd than these stats.

The 2011 Panthers (+0.181 EPA per run play) and 2010 Patriots (+0.103) edge out the 2020 Ravens (+0.086) in run-game efficiency over the past decade, but there hasn’t been a better high-volume rushing attack if we set a 500-carry minimum. The 2019 Ravens (+0.074) rank fifth. Jackson is the straw that stirs the drink of one of the best rushing offenses that football has ever seen.

I understand that Jackson isn’t as accurate as some would hope. Well, this level of rushing goodness has still been more than good enough to lead to all sorts of team success, and Jackson is the reason why this approach has gone so smoothly in today’s pass-happy NFL. It might be unorthodox, but as Billy Madison once said: “For the love of God, cherish it. You have to cherish it.”

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