"That's 2,500 rushing yards, not total yards."
We should all thank Babe Ruth for today's barrage of sports predictions; without his called shot 78 years ago none of this would have been possible. Of course, Mark Messier made it fashionable in 1994 with his Game 7 guarantee, but it was Ruth who pioneered sports forecasting.
Now, thanks to Twitter, Facebook, and a bunch of other social media outlets, sports predictions have reached a whole 'nother level. With the 2010 NFL season less than three weeks away, we took a look at this summer's boldest predictions from some of the NFL's most prominent figures.
"I know I can get (2,500 rushing yards) as long as I stay patient and keep working hard. - Chris Johnson
CJ2K is just seven months removed from rushing for 2,006 yards, but 2,500 rushing yards would rival Brady's 50 touchdown season as possibly the greatest individual feat in NFL history. In order to rush for 2,500 yards, Johnson would have to run for 156.25 yards per game, roughly 31 more yards per game than his ridiculous average of 125.4 from 2009. Of course, if Johnson can accomplish this feat, he should change his name to CJ2.5K.
"I really liken this team a great deal to the team of 1980, in which the great Jim Plunkett pulled us out of the doldrums, took us to the Super Bowl as a wild card, and we had so many great players who eventually made their way into the Hall of Fame." - Al Davis
Based on stats alone, the Jason Campbell-Jim Plunkett comparison isn't too far off, but other than that it's tough to see the 2010 Raiders as Super Bowl contenders. Oakland has failed to reach the six-win plateau in seven consecutive seasons and Campbell has yet to take a snap in an NFL playoff game. We love Davis' taste in jackets, but a Super Bowl ring from this year's Silver and Black is a tall order.
"Soon to be Champs" - Rex Ryan on his 2010 Jets team
Should we expect anything less from Rex Ryan? It's a bit over-the-top to sign Adam Schefter's bus "soon to be champs," but don't forget the Jets led the Colts 17-13 at halftime in the AFC Championship earlier this year. If Darrelle Revis decides $122 million will suffice, Ryan's premonition cold ring true come February.
"What we do really fits him. He has that Kurt Warner awareness, if you will." - Mike Martz on Jay Cutler
That's Kurt Warner, as in the Cardinals quarterback who amassed 56 touchdowns and 28 interceptions in '08 and '09 before retiring earlier this year. Cutler on the other hand led the NFL in interceptions in 2009 with 26, six more interceptions than the next quarterback. Cutler's arm strength and ability is off the charts, but a shaky offensive line could impair Cutler's perceived awareness. Last Saturday, Cutler was sacked five times by the Raiders in one quarter of action -- that doesn't exactly spell awareness.