Move over, Michael Strahan – T.J. Watt is coming through.
The Pittsburgh Steelers edge rusher tied the New York Giants legend for the NFL’s single-season sack record on Sunday. Watt tied the record with a sack of Baltimore Ravens quarterback Tyler Huntley late in the second quarter of Pittsburgh’s Week 18 contest.
Watt now has 22.5 sacks on the season, equaling Strahan’s mark from 2001.
He nearly tied the record earlier in the game, but the play was not ruled a sack:
While Watt’s share of the record comes in the NFL’s first 17-game season, he tied the mark in just 15 games played. He missed the Steelers’ Week 3 game against the Cincinnati Bengals and Week 11 game against the Los Angeles Chargers.
Aside from the two missed games, Watt’s dominance has stretched the entire season. He was only held without a sack in three of the games he played and he notched multiple sacks five times. He made a strong push for the record down the home stretch, piling up four sacks in a Monday Night Football win over the Cleveland Browns in Week 17.
Watt also passed three players who were previously No. 2 on the single-season sack list. Justin Houston (2014), Jared Allen (2011) and Mark Gastineau (1984) all had 22 sacks in a season. J.J. Watt, T.J.’s brother, is No. 8 on the list with two 20.5-sack seasons (2012 and 2014).
With his record-setting season, T.J. can join J.J. in more rarified company as an NFL Defensive Player of the Year recipient.