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NFL stats and records, Week 10: Is Vikings WR Justin Jefferson off to best three-year start in history?

NFL Research offers the best nuggets from each week of games in the NFL. Here are the most eye-popping statistical accomplishments of Week 10 of the 2022 NFL season.

1) Justin Fields shines in another Bears loss

Justin Skyler Fields. Fields went nuclear for the Bears … again. A week after setting the modern-era quarterback record with 178 rushing yards against the Dolphins, Fields recorded 147 rushing yards and two scores against the Lions in Week 10. Despite becoming the first quarterback in the Super Bowl era with 120 rushing yards in back-to-back games, Fields' Herculean efforts were wasted in two Bears losses.

With his 67-yard scamper in the fourth quarter, Fields became the first quarterback in the Super Bowl era with two rushing touchdowns of 60-plus yards in the same season (also had a 61-yard rushing touchdown in Week 9). Fields has set Super Bowl-era records for rushing yards by a quarterback over any five-game span with 555 since Week 6, and his prowess has helped the Bears become the only team in NFL history with 225 or more rushing yards in five consecutive games.

Although his legs have taken most of the headlines, Fields has also improved with his arm. Over the course of this five-game run, Fields has thrown nine pass touchdowns after recording just three in his first five games. He has a passing and rushing touchdown in four straight games, trailing only Kyler Murray (five straight games in 2020) for the longest streak since at least 1950 when game logs were first tracked.

2) Patrick Mahomes is Patrick Mahomes

Have you ever seen a football player better than Patrick Mahomes? I have not. Mahomes had his 16th career game with four or more passing touchdowns, which is already tied for the ninth-most by any player in the Super Bowl era. Mahomes has thrown for a quartet in 22.2% of his career games. No other quarterback in NFL history has done so in more than 15% of their games. Mahomes has 176 passing touchdowns in 72 career starts; he passed Dan Marino (173) for the most in a player's first 75 starts.

Mahomes leads the NFL with 2,936 passing yards and 25 passing touchdowns, and the Chiefs have re-entered the driver's seat for the No. 1 seed in the AFC. That may not change anytime soon. Mahomes has won 24 straight starts in November and December, the longest winning streak over any two-month span since quarterback starts have been recorded in 1950.

3) The cardiac Vikings win another game late

After a game-of-the-year candidate against the Bills, the Vikings are 5-1 in games in which they trailed in the fourth quarter -- the most wins and highest win percentage (.833) this season. Minnesota is an NFL-best 7-0 in one-score games this season. The last team to win at least seven such games without a loss was the 2009 Colts, who made an appearance in Super Bowl XLIV (lost to Saints). Kirk Cousins had his fifth game-winning drive this season, already the most he's had in any season of his career.

4) Justin Jefferson: Best three-year start in NFL history?

Speaking of special Vikings, Justin Jefferson had a career-high 193 receiving yards in Week 10, the most by any player in any game this season. He also may have had the catch of the century:

Week 10 marked Jefferson's 20th career game with 100-plus receiving yards and his seventh with at least 150 -- both of which set NFL records for a player's first three seasons. Cousins averaged 12.1 pass yards per attempt targeting his No. 1 wide receiver and 4.8 pass yards per attempt targeting every one else.

Jefferson joined Hall of Famer Randy Moss and Odell Beckham Jr. as the only players in NFL history with at least 4,000 receiving yards in their first three NFL seasons. Jefferson needs 47 receiving yards to pass Beckham and 88 to pass Moss for the most all time.

5) Tua Tagovailoa better than 1984 Dan Marino?

Tua Tagovailoa's ascension continued in Week 10 with a 285-yard, three-touchdown performance against the Browns. Tagovailoa leads the NFL in pass yards per attempt (9.1), pass touchdown-interception ratio (18-3) and passer rating (118.4), while ranking second in completion percentage (71.0). Each of those marks would set single-season Dolphins records, and his passer rating is actually the fifth-highest in any season in NFL history behind three Super Bowl-winning quarterbacks: Aaron Rodgers (two seasons), Peyton Manning, and Nick Foles.

Tagovailoa had his third consecutive game with at least three passing touchdowns, making him the second Dolphins player to accomplish that feat. You definitely know the other without me telling you but here we go: Hall of Famer Dan Marino.

To compare Tagovailoa's 2022 season to Marino's 1984 campaign:

  • Tagovailoa (2022): 71.0 completion percentage, 9.1 pass yards/attempt, 118.4 passer rating
  • Marino (1984): 64.2 completion percentage, 9.0 pass yards/attempt, 108.9 passer rating

6) Christian Watson breaks out

The Packers and Aaron Rodgers have been waiting for a wide receiver to differentiate himself from the rest of the roster and morph into the latter's No. 1 target. After recording 88 yards and no touchdowns receiving in his first six games, Watson went for 107 and three scores in Week 10 against the Cowboys. Watson became the third player this season with 100 receiving yards and three touchdowns in a game. The others? Superstars A.J. Brown and Stefon Diggs.

Watson is the first Packers player with three receiving touchdowns since Davante Adams in 2020. Watson became the second rookie to score three receiving touchdowns against the Cowboys, joining Hall of Famer Randy Moss who did so on Thanksgiving Day in 1998.

Bonus: With Nick Bosa's sack in Week 10, the Bosa family became the seventh family tree to record 100-plus sacks collectively, as Nick, Joey, and John Bosa have 100.5 sacks combined and counting (each member of the family must have a minimum of 1.0-plus sacks).

Research shoutouts: Jack Andrade (@RealJackAndrade), Dante Koplowitz-Fleming (@DanteKopFlem), Matt Okada (@MattOkada), Cole Jacobson (@ColeJacobson32), Michelle Magdziuk (@BallBlastEm), Blake Warye (@bwaryeorblake)

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