Cardinals' Andre Ellington working on unprecedented rookie season

Former Tiger star on track for 5.0+ rushing average, 40 catches; leads NFL in percentage of 10-yard rushes

Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Jaron Brown (13) and Larry Fitzgerald (11) celebrate teammate Andre Ellington's (38) touchdown during the second half of an NFL football game against the St. Louis Rams, Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013, in Glendale, Ariz. The Cardinals won 30-10. (AP Photo/Matt York)

AP

Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Jaron Brown (13) and Larry Fitzgerald (11) celebrate teammate Andre Ellington's (38) touchdown during the second half of an NFL football game against the St. Louis Rams, Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013, in Glendale, Ariz. The Cardinals won 30-10. (AP Photo/Matt York)

Game by game, Andre Ellington is making history.

The former Clemson running back continued his standout rookie season with the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday, as he rushed for a team-high 64 yards on 15 carries and caught two passes for eight yards in his team's 17-10 victory at Seattle.

The Cardinals, now 10-5 and in the mix for a playoff spot, have utilized Ellington as a running back, slot receiver and outside receiver this year, and he's responded with 622 yards rushing on 109 carries (a 5.7 average) and 36 receptions for 360 yards.

Ellington is on track to become the first NFL rookie running back ever to average 5.0 yards per carry or more while having 40 receptions for at least a 10.0 average. Only one rookie in pro football history has hit those numbers - Abner Haynes of the AFL's Dallas Texans in 1960.

As a rusher, Ellington leads the NFL with 23.4 percent of his carries gaining at least 10 yards.

He leads the Cardinals with nine games of at least 60 yards from scrimmage, and Arizona is 8-1 in those games.

Cardinals' quarterback Carson Palmer said that if Ellington chose, he could make the transition to being a full-time receiver in the NFL.

"If he really wanted to dedicate himself in the off-season...he could be the team's No. 2 wide receiver, without a doubt," Palmer told the Cardinals' official website.

"I'm actually going to work on it in the offseason, just kind of get the understanding of it," Ellington said. "Right now, I'm kind of raw, just going out there playing. I never knew anything about it because I haven't played it, but I'm actually enjoying it a lot."

So are the Cardinals and their fans.

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