INDIANAPOLIS – On a day Frank Gore ran behind three rookie linemen against the NFL's top scoring defense, the veteran running back took a major leap towards his march for 1,000 yards.
Gore's 101-yard afternoon, on a season-high 26 carries, in last Sunday's win over the Vikings wasn't expected.
But it was to Adrian Peterson, last Sunday's opposing running back, who is continuing to build his own Hall of Fame career.
"I have to tip my hat to him," Peterson said of Gore after their Week 15 meeting.
"He is a guy I have been watching since Miami, and I always loved his running style and the way he has overcome adversity with injuries. He has been playing in this league for a long time. He is in the top 10 (all-time rushing list). He has been playing in the league a long time, so it is not surprising even against our strong defense that he gained 100 yards."
The second 100-yard rushing outing from Gore this season has him nearing that elusive mark for any Colt running back in nearly a decade.
Joseph Addai in 2007 was the last 1,000-yard rusher to play for the Colts.
With an average of 55 rushing yards in each of the last two games, Gore will end that drought.
He will also join rarefied air among NFL greats.
- With a 1,000-yard season, Gore would join Hall of Famers Emmitt Smith (11), Curtis Martin (10), Walter Payton (10) and Barry Sanders (10) as the only players in NFL history to rush for 1,000 yards in at least nine different seasons.
- If Gore gets to 1,000 yards at the age of 33, he would join John Riggins (1,239 yards in 1984) as the last player in NFL history to accomplish that feat at the age of 33 or older.
Try to bring up any of those numbers to Gore and the running back immediately starts shaking his head.
"I don't think about it," Gore swears. "I'm still having fun. I still love the game. I still train hard. That motivates me when I hear people say, "He's 33, he can't do this, can't do that.'"
After the win over the Vikings, Gore showed a sign of himself you don't often see.
Gore isn't one to speak in front of his team often, so when he does, the ears begin to perk up.
"He's a legend around this game," cornerback Darius Butler says of his fellow Florida native. "He's always going to be honest and you respect it. Whenever he talks, everyone else listens."
"There's more football behind him than ahead of him. Once you get to that point of your career…you never know of the opportunity going forward in this game so you want to take full advantage of all of them."
Gore is doing just that.