In the space of four days last week, Cowboy running back Emmitt Smith carried the ball a career-high 34 times in a game against the Redskins and then had 32 more rushing attempts against the Steelers on Thanksgiving Day. That's 66 carries for 241 yards in two big wins for Dallas (8-5). "He's got to be hurting," says Cowboy defensive end Jim Jeffcoat.
For now, Smith is saying, "I feel fine; you're making more out of it than there is." But earlier in the season, after a 32-With 500 carries so early in life, Smith is in good company.
carry game against the Browns, he said, "If you're going to be carrying the ball 32 times a week, you can't last long."
As it turns out, a heavy workload for an NFL back at a tender age is a trademark of some of the league's best ballcarriers, past and present. Here are the five youngest players to reach 500 rushing attempts.