A question of NFL records; Just how important are they really?

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Hall of Fame QB Dan Marino (Source: pittsburghquarterback.com)

In sport, records are one method of measuring greatness. Records are all based on statistics of one form or another. Some sports, baseball in particular, are statistical havens. Seemingly every action in baseball has a statistic associated with it. Every sport determines on its own what stat is recorded and how.

Based on those stats, trends can be extrapolated, interpolated, and sometimes fabricated from thin air. These trends, which run the gamut from greatness to goat, are forever referred to as records.

Sports records tend to be great trivia and, when broken, generate several minutes of air time on sports programs and multiple lines of print in newspapers across the country. They also give the fans something to talk about around the water cooler the next day.

In virtually every sport, however, it’s championships that are more celebrated and revered.

The NFL Record and Fact Book lists numerous records that will never be touched or even approached, i.e. Most Consecutive Championships: 1946-1950 Cleveland Browns (5, 4 as members of the AAFC, 1 NFL). It is virtually impossible in the Super Bowl Era for any team to even sniff that record.

In fact there are only 6 franchises that have managed to win twice in a row, (the Pittsburgh Steelers won two consecutive Super Bowls twice in the 70’s, with two years separating both pair of wins).

Everyone will agree that football in the Super Bowl Era is a vastly different game than it was back in the early days of the league, however.

Pro Football has records that most every fan knows by heart. Career touchdowns: Jerry Rice; Sacks in a single season: Michael Strahan; Career Rushing Leader: Emmitt Smith; Most Passing Yards in a Season: Dan Marino. Oops, I meant Drew Brees

The 2011 New Orleans Saints have produced arguably the greatest offensive season in NFL history by setting numerous Team and Individual records. Some of which are more celebrated than others.

Of these, there’s one record being downplayed by the media to an extent: Single Season Passing Yards.

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