Curse of 370? Myth or Fact? And Will Willie Approach that Number?

Bumped from the diaries. For a similar and relevant topic, see LiveinDC's diary and the subsequent comments about Fast Willie Parker vs. LaDanian Tomlinson. -Blitz-

I recently read an article in the PG by Ed Bouchette about the "curse of 370."  He wrote it after Coach Tomlin stated in a press conference that he was going to "ride Parker until the wheels came off."  I've always been fascinated with the fine line between getting as much production out of a guy as you can and overworking them to the point where they break down.  So after reading his article I dove into some research and looked at every running back since 1975 that has carried the rock 370 times or more (I didn't go back any further than that because prior to 1978, they only played 14 games so the idea that a guy could still get 370 carries is a stretch).  There were 20 guys that had accomplished that feat and of those guys only three guys did it more than once.  The great Eric Dickerson is the only back in that time to do it more than twice and he actually did it four times.  For the sake of argument I'll leave out Larry Johnson who had over 400 carries last year, because we obviously don't have enough stats to make any determination how it will effect him.  I'm also leaving out Ricky Williams who was out of the NFL (for off the field reasons) one year after posting two straight seasons with over 370 carries.  So we have 18 guys left, here we go:

Of the 18 guys, 5 guys had multiple 1,000 yard seasons before and none after:

Marcus Allen
Barry Foster
Terrell Davis
Curtis Martin (played one more season before retiring)
Shaun Alexander (hurt last year - only year since)

5 more guys had a season with at least 1,500 yards but would never again break 1,300:
George Rogers
Christian Okoye
Jamal Anderson
Eddie George
Jamal Lewis (3 years since)

8 of the 18 guys suffered some kind of significant injury in the season immediately following a season of 370 carries or more:
Dickerson - after 1986 (404 carries) he would play in a combined 12 games the next two years
Barry Foster - after 1992 (390 carries) he would play in 9 games the next year
Jamal Anderson - after 1998 (410 carries) he would play in 2 games the next year
Terrell Davis - after 1998 (392 carries) he would play in 4 games the next year
Edgerrin James - after 2000 (387 carries) he would play in 6 games the next year
Jamal Lewis - after 2003 (387 carries) he would play in 12 games the next year
Curtis Martin - after 2004 (371 carries) he would play in 12 games the next year
Shaun Alexander - after 2005 (370 carries) he would play in 10 games the next year

These stats don't point out that the sky will fall if a back reaches the 370 mark but it is a significant trend that should make coaches shy away from over working one guy.  I would much rather see Willie end up with 330-350 carries and Davenport have 100-150 or so.  So do you believe the myth or is it hogwash? ***and for what it's worth Willie is on pace for 400 carries so far****

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