Running backs take to the air

Running backs take to the air

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Houston Texans' running back Arian Foster can hurt teams in multiple ways. Throughout the first 10 games of the 2011 season Foster has already rushed for 740 yards and six touchdowns and has added 445 yards and two touchdowns receiving.

Yesterday, in the Texans' 37-9 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Foster not only registered 84 yards on the ground, but also compiled 102 receiving yards on four catches, which included a 78-yard TD reception. His touchdown catch matched a career long he set in Week 7 against the Tennessee Titans on Oct. 23, 2011. Foster's two 78-yard touchdown catches this season tie him with Pro Football Hall of Famer Walter Payton as the only running backs since the 1970 merger to have two 70-plus yard TD receptions in the same season.

Payton completed this feat during the 1983 NFL season. The first of his two long touchdown catches came during the second game of the season when he struggled on the ground with only 45 yards on 17 carries against the Buccaneers. But as great players usually do, Payton found a way to succeed, with four minutes left before halftime when he took a strike from Jim McMahon 73 yards for a touchdown. The Bears won the game 17-10.

Thirteen weeks later on Dec. 11 against the Minnesota Vikings "Sweetness" did it all for the Bears offense as he rushed for 94 yards on 17 carries and also gained 95 yards on five receptions. His lone touchdown of the game came in the first quarter with Chicago trailing 6-0. The Bears began their second drive of the game with a first-and-ten from their own 26-yard line. McMahon took the snap and overhand lateraled it to fullback Matt Suhey who then connected with a wide-open Payton down the right sideline for a 74-yard touchdown pass which gave Chicago their first lead of the day 7-6. The Bears wouldn't trail again as they went on to win the game 19-13.
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