LeSean McCoy is not backing off. He still believes he’s the best running back in the NFL.
And he’s not afraid to keep saying it. No matter what Adrian Peterson says.
“Yes, yes, yes,” McCoy said after OTA practice Monday (see observations from practice). “Especially the last three years. Check the numbers. You're a numbers guy, check the numbers.”
McCoy made headlines last month when he declared on ESPN that he and not Peterson is the NFL’s best running back.
“The last three years?” McCoy said at the time. "I've been All-Pro first-team twice. I never leave the field. I block. I catch. I never leave the field. I don't have anybody do my job. I do it myself. Tons of credit goes out to Adrian Peterson. I'm a big fan of his, for sure. But I feel I'm the best.”
Peterson laughed off McCoy’s comment during a recent interview with Fox Sports Radio.
“I definitely started laughing,” Peterson said. “It was funny because when [he was] asked the question, you know, he kind of hesitated. If you watched it, you know he didn’t believe it when he said it. So I’ve got to tell the youngsters: ‘Next time, say it with your chest, man. Say it like you mean it.’”
Asked to respond specifically to that comment from Peterson, McCoy said this:
“I don’t know if he’s joking or what,” McCoy said. “I don’t know how to take that. I play the game and it speaks for itself. I don’t know what that meant. I don’t understand what he was getting at.”
Since 2010, Peterson has more rushing yards than McCoy (5,631 to 4,836), but McCoy has an NFL-best 6,655 yards from scrimmage, 56 more than Peterson.
McCoy’s 7,600 career yards from scrimmage are eighth-most in NFL history by a player before his 26th birthday. He led the NFL with 17 rushing touchdowns and 20 total touchdowns in 2011, and this past season led the NFL with franchise records of 1,607 rushing yards and 2,146 yards from scrimmage in 2013.
During the three-year period McCoy spoke of -- from 2011 through 2013 -- Peterson led the NFL with 4,333 rushing yards and McCoy was third with 3,756, also behind Marshawn Lynch (4,051).
But during the same span, McCoy led all backs with 4,983 yards from scrimmage, 123 more than Peterson.
“If you look on tape, as a back, I do everything,” McCoy said Monday. "Running, catching, blocking, third-down guy. There's nothing that you can ask me to do that I won't want to do or that I can't do.
“So in that aspect, in the last three years you can't find a back that's more productive.”
Peterson was hurt much of last year and was limited to 1,266 yards and a 4.5 average, down from 2,097 yards and a 6.0 average during his record-setting 2012 season.
“I’ve got to give the young guy credit because there is nothing wrong having confidence in yourself,” Peterson said on Fox Sports Radio. “But, you’ve got to speak with more truth. He’s a heck of a running back and I like his style, so I won’t get on him too much.”