HOUSTON — Much of the talk this past offseason about Indianapolis Colts running back Frank Gore revolved around various numbers and accomplishments the 33 year old could achieve throughout the 2016 season.
Could Gore move into the Top 10 in NFL history in career rushing yards? Could he become the oldest running back in league history since John Riggins in 1984 to rush for 1,000 yards in a season? Could he rush for 100 yards in a game, becoming the first Colts back to accomplish that feat since the 2012 season?
Last week, Gore took care of the first item on the list, moving past NFL legend Jim Brown for ninth place on the league's all-time rushing list. On Sunday night against the Houston Texans, Gore crossed the last item off the list, running for 106 yards on 22 carries. And, at this pace, he very well could break the 1,000-yard plateau for the first time since the 2014 season.
All of those accomplishments mean nothing to Gore, however, if his team isn't winning. And after his standout performance Sunday night, he was in no celebratory mood; his team had just blown a two-score lead to fall to the Texans, 26-23, in overtime.
"I can't. We lost," Gore told reporters when asked to discuss becoming the first Colts running back since Vick Ballard on Dec. 16, 2012 to run for 100 yards in a game. "This is a team sport. The main thing is about winning. I did that. I've been running my whole career. I came here to win and I don't care about that. I just want to win."
Though Gore didn't want to discuss his performance, it certainly merits another look.
He ran 22 times for 106 yards for a 4.8 yards-per-carry average, and had a season-long 22-yard carry on a 2nd and 4 play in the second quarter.
Gore's night included carries of 22, 13, 10, nine, eight and seven yards, the last of which came in overtime and got him to his final tally of 106 yards on the night.
He had actually gotten to 100 yards on the dot during regulation on a two-yard run with 2:32 left in the fourth quarter, but two plays later, he was stuffed for a loss of one and relegated back to double digits at 99 yards.
Gore not only became the first Colts running back in 55 regular season games to rush for 100 yards, but with 108 scrimmage yards, he passed former Colts legend Edgerrin James (15,610) and Tiki Barber (15,632) for the 12th most in NFL history.
Factoring in Sunday night's game, Gore has run 100 times for 434 yards with two rushing touchdowns, as well as 15 receptions for 72 yards and a receiving touchdown on the year. At this pace, Gore would finish the regular season with 267 carries for 1,157 yards, earning his first 1,000-yard season since 2014, when he had 255 carries for 1,106 yards in his final season with the San Francisco 49ers.
But again, while great accomplishments, Gore sticks to his team-first mindset. The Colts on Sunday had a prime opportunity to get to .500, win their second game in a row and, most importantly, take over first place in the AFC South Division.
Instead, Indianapolis finds itself at 2-4 and at the bottom of the division. Despite being in every game each and every week, Gore said his team needs to learn how to be consistent for all 60 minutes, and quick.
"We're a good team. I know we're a good team," Gore said. "Whether we're coming out slow in the first half or we start fast and come out slow in the second half, we just have to find ways to put it all together. It's sad. I know how we're working. I know we have a good team. I know we have good players in this locker room. We're just not finishing. We have to find a way to play together or we're going to keep putting ourselves in a deeper hole."