September 13, 2013

Rookie of the Year: Mike Anderson, 2000

Running Back, Denver Broncos

Age: 27 (Sept. 21)
College: Utah
Height: 6’0”   Weight: 235

Anderson took an unusual path to the NFL. He was late in entering college as he spent four years in the US Marine Corps following high school, where he played in the marching band rather than on the football team. Upon leaving the Marines, he entered Mt. San Jacinto Community College and began playing football, moving on to Utah from there. He was chosen by the Broncos in the sixth round of the 2000 NFL draft and, when injuries depleted the running back corps early in the season, moved into the lineup.

2000 Season Summary
Appeared in all 16 games
[Bracketed numbers indicate league rank in Top 20]

Attempts – 297 [10]
Most attempts, game - 37 (for 251 yds.) at New Orleans 12/3
Yards – 1487 [4]
Most yards, game – 251 yards (on 37 carries) at New Orleans 12/3
Average gain – 5.0 [7]
TDs – 15 [2, 1st in AFC]
200-yard rushing games – 1
100-yard rushing games – 6

Pass Receiving
Receptions – 23      
Most receptions, game – 6 (for 41 yds.) vs. San Diego 11/19
Yards – 169
Most yards, game - 41 (on 6 catches) vs. San Diego 11/19
Average gain – 7.3
TDs – 0

TDs – 15 [5, tied with Randy Moss]
2-pt conversion – 1
Points – 92

Postseason: 1 G (AFC Wild Card playoff at Baltimore)
Rushing attempts – 15
Rushing yards – 40
Average gain rushing – 2.7
Rushing TDs – 0

Pass receptions – 2
Pass receiving yards - 10
Average yards per reception – 5.0
Pass Receiving TDs - 0

Awards & Honors:
NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year: AP, PFWA

Broncos went 11-5 to finish second in the AFC West and qualify for a Wild Card spot in the playoffs while leading the conference in total yards (6554), scoring (485 points), and touchdowns (58). Lost AFC Wild Card playoff to Baltimore Ravens (21-3).

Anderson had a lesser season in 2001, rushing for 678 yards, and split time with injury-ridden star RB Terrell Davis. He was shifted to fullback in 2002, where he played well while running for 386 yards and blocking for rookie Clinton Portis. After another good year at fullback in ’03, Anderson lost all of 2004 with a knee injury. He returned to the running back position in ’05 and ran for 1014 yards. Signing as a free agent with the Baltimore Ravens, he backed up RB Jamal Lewis and saw scant action in 2006 and ’07, his last two seasons. Overall, Anderson rushed for 4067 yards on 919 carries (4.4 avg.) with 37 touchdowns and, never a proficient receiver out of the backfield, caught 92 passes for 727 yards and five more TDs.


Rookie of the Year Profiles feature players who were named Rookie of the Year in the NFL, AFL (1960-69), or USFL (1983-85) by a recognized organization (Associated Press – Offense or Defense, Newspaper Enterprise Association, United Press International, The Sporting News, or the league itself – Pepsi NFL Rookie of the Year). 

[Updated 11/30/14]