This post will be a yearly occurrence where I will discuss everything from gains, retirements, and WTF record-book keeping.
This year saw a slew of running backs call it a career in the WTF.
Most notability Chuck Muncie of the Miami Dolphins:
Muncie spent five seasons with the San Francisco 49ers where he was elected to five straight Pro Bowls. He also achieved All-Pro three times (82, 83, 84). After the 1984 season, Muncie was traded to the Dolphins for a first round pick in 1986. This pick was later used to help the Niners acquire Dan Marino.
Muncie was heavily underutilized in his final season in Miami, rushing for 470 yards on 78 carries. His constant clash with head coach Don Shula surely was a main cause of his retirement, although he would have been heavily sought out for via trade in the off season.
Chuck rushed for 10590 yards in his career, which is good for third all time. He also ran for 108 touchdowns (2nd all time).
Another big-name RB to call it a career was Franco Harris of the Kansas City Chiefs. Still battling in the playoffs, Harris has a shot to add another Super Bowl ring to his finger. He helped the Bills win the first two WTF bowls in 80 and 81.
Harris was also named to the Pro-Bowl and All-Pro teams in 1980 and 1984.
Like Muncie, Franco was traded from his original team after five seasons and promptly retired. Harris was involved in the blockbuster trade that saw Marcus Allen arrive in Buffalo.
But unlike Muncie, Harris was a shell of his former self in his sixth season. Now only 44 max speed, Harris ran 21 times for 184 yards for the Chiefs. Harris is currently seventh all time in rushing yards and sixth in touchdowns.
The Lions saw two of their running backs retire in Mike Pruitt and Joe Washington. Pruitt, an original draft pick of the Lions, had a serviceable career after starting at 50 max speed. Pruitt, a pro bowler in 1981, currently sits at the No. 10 spot on the rushing yards and touchdown list.
Washington, a change of pace back for the Lions, was acquired from the Patriots for two draft picks. In his last season, Washington actually outperformed the faster Pruitt, averaging more yards per carry and running for one more TD. Washington's best year came with the Patriots in 1981, where he rushed for 1315 yards and had 16 total touchdowns.
The best of the rest include Pete Johnson of the Packers, the Jets' Curtis Dickey, and Gary Anderson of the Buccaneers.
Anderson was never given a chance with Tampa Bay only carrying the ball three times in his three-year career. The 24-year-old 44 max speeder decided to hang up his cleats after a disappointing career.
Johnson and Dickey had similar careers in their WTF tenure. Dickey was traded to the Jets from the Packers for four players to make room for Eric Dickerson, but the Packers later moved Dickerson in the John Elway trade, which also included Johnson.
Speaking of early retirements, QB Mike Tomczak drafted in last year's draft by the Giants called it a career after one season.
Sticking to offense, the Seahawks lost two WRs who have been mainstays for their franchise. John Stallworth and James Lofton are no more. Drafted in the third and fourth rounds of the original WTF draft, the duo teamed up for 78 touchdowns.
Another set of players who put up similar numbers are linebackers Harry Carson of the Niners and Clay Matthews of the Bears. Both players spent all six seasons with the same franchise.
Matthews, a two-time pro bowler and 1983 All-Pro, made 225 tackles and 45 sacks in his career. In his All-Pro season, he had 13 sacks for the Bears.
Carson also made two Pro Bowls and was named to the 1980 All-Pro team. He made 210 tackles and 48 sacks in his six-year career.
1985 Record Watch
QB Warren Moon of the Dolphins broke two single-season records previously held by.... himself. Moon completed 157 passes and threw 313 times, both WTF records. He threw for 3938 yards, good for second, behind himself again (set last year).
The 49ers rookie Herschel Walker ran 321 times this season, which is 6 carries less than what Chuck Muncie did in 1984.
Robb Riddick of the Seahawks returned three kickoffs for touchdowns in 1985, a WTF record. Riddick returned two in one game against the Packers in Week 5. That feat is also a single-game record. He also amassed 268 return yards in that game, another record!
Dolphins DB Felix Wright had four sacks, another single-season record for the Phins.
Packers DB Tom Pridemore broke his own season tackle record with 107 tackles, 13 more than the previous season.
As a team the Steelers continue to shine on offense. Joe Montana and company went for 5133 yards this season, a new record.
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