It's widely said that 27 years of age is considered the peak performance year of an NFL running back. So we decided to take a look at the best rushing seasons for RBs at the ripe old age of 27 since 1990 (our data limitation).
Pro Football Focus wrote a great piece a few years ago analyzing the "Age of Decline" among running backs. They concluded that an RBs "decline is pretty dramatic and consistent after 26". That being said there's always the stud who maintains a high level of performance beyond that ripe old age, examples like LaDainian Tomlinson and Emmitt Smith come to mind.
The 2012 season was record breaking one for Adrian Peterson (2,097 yards), and coincidentally he was 27 at the time. This year another prolific rusher enters the season as a 27 year old, Jamaal Charles. The Bills' running back CJ Spiller, who is also 27, struggled a little in 2013 but was lights out on an efficiency basis in 2012. Will he be able to build off an amazing 2013 campaign where he rushed for 1,287 and had 693 yards receiving in 15 games.
Let's take a look at who had the best rushing year as a 27 year old (with a minimum 100 rushing attempts).