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The all-time lead for sacks in a single season (22.5) is now shared between New York Giants defensive end Michael Strahan and Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker TJ Watt after Watt tied the record on Sunday.
Coming into Week 18’s matchup against the Baltimore Ravens, Watt was a sack away (21.5) from tying Strahan’s 20-year record, first set as part of the New York Giants defense in 2001.
With 28 seconds left in the second quarter, Watt sacked Baltimore’s interim quarterback, Tyler Huntley, in the red zone — reaching the historic sack total in his fifth season. Past defensive players have come close with no luck.
As relayed by Sporting News, former Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Justin Houston — part of the Ravens defense — and Minnesota Vikings defensive end Jared Allen inched the closest to Strahan’s record with 21.5 sacks in a season, respectively.
Left with two quarters and an overtime period that resulted in a Steelers win, 16-13, Watt fell short of the mark after failing to register another sack.
In the season’s new 17-game slate, Watt was activated for 15 games — missing Week 14’s matchup against the Minnesota Vikings with a groin injury. Watt has also reportedly played through a rib injury.
Follow along on Twitter: @AlejandroAveela