Best RB of All-Time

After watching the Top 10 single-season performance's on NFL Network, I decided to do a little research, and come up with who I think is the best NFL RB of all-time. Here's what I came up with.

5. Marcus Allen - Allen, who played for the KC Cheifs, and Oakland Raiders in his 16 year career, was as good a reciever out of the backfield, as he was a runner. Allen is most famous for his record 74-yard TD run in the 1983 Super Bowl, which was broken after Pittsburgh's Willie Parker ran for a 75-yard TD in Super Bowl XL. Allen has 123 rushing TD's in his career, which puts him at number the number ten spot on the list for most TD's in NFL history. Allen was also a 6-time Pro Bowler, and 5-time All-pro. All this makes him my number 5 all-time best RB.


Career Stats:

222 G, 168 GS, 3022 Rush ATT, 12243 Rush YDS, 123 Rush TD's, 55.1 Y/G, 4.1 YPC, 587 REC, 5411 REC YDS, 21 REC TD's, 65 fumbles

  • Inducted into Pro Football HOF in 2003

4. Emmitt Smith - Smith, though the NFL's leading rusher, is 4th on my list, mainly because there's so much competition. In his 15 year career (13 with Dallas, 2 with Arizona), Smith ran for 18,355 yards, and 75 TD's. Smith helped the Dallas Cowboys win 3 Super Bowl's in the 1990's, and had alot of speed, with a little power, and he was really hard to bring down. Smith passed Walter Payton on the NFL's all-time rushing yards list while playing with the Arizona Cardinals, which is where he finished his career.


Career Stats:

226 G, 219 GS, 4409 Rush ATT, 18355 Rush YDS, 164 Rush TD's, 81.2 Y/G, 4.2 YPC, 515 REC, 3224 REC YDS, 11 REC TD's, 61 fumbles

  • Not yet eligible for HOF

3. Walter Payton - Payton was, in my opinion, the 3rd hardest runner to bring down. Payton may not have had a whole lot of power, but who needs power when you're as fast as Walter. He was an extremely elusive back, who could easily spin, or straight-out run around defenders. Payton retired at age 33, after spending 13 seasons in the NFL, all of which were in Chicago. Payton earned a Super Bowl ring with Chicago in '85, and he was an All-pro, and Pro Bowler in 9 of his 13 NFL seasons.

AAHA188 8x10-Action~Walter-Payton-Posters

Career Stats:

190 G, 184 GS, 3838 Rush ATT, 16726 Rush YDS, 110 Rush TD's, 88.0 Y/G, 4.4 YPC, 492 REC, 4538 REC YDS, 15 REC TD's, 86 fumbles

  • Inducted into Pro Football HOF in 1993

2. Barry Sanders - Sanders will forever be remembered as the greatest Detroit Lions player, and on some people's list, is the best RB in NFL history. I don't care if you hate the Lions with a passion, this guy was amazing. Sanders, unfortunately had to retire at age 30, after just 10 years in the NFL (all of which he spent in Detroit), but he was a Pro Bowler, and All-pro in all 10 of his seasons. Sanders averaged 99.8 YPG, and scored 109 total TD's (99 Rushing, 10 Receiving), and averaged 5.0 yards per carry. The only thing Sanders wasn't able to accomplish was to bring a Super Bowl championship to Detroit. In fact, Detroit won the NFC Central Division championship just twice in his 10 years in Detroit ('91, and '93).


Career Stats:

153 G, 151 GS, 3062 Rush ATT, 15269 Rush YDS, 99 Rush TD's, 99.8 Y/G, 5.0 YPC, 352 REC, 2921 REC YDS, 10 REC TD's, 41 fumbles

  • Inducted into Pro Football HOF in 2004

1. Jim Brown - Like Sanders, Brown had a very short-lived NFL career. Brown played just 9 NFL seasons, all of which were with Cleveland (and, actually, Brown was FB, but I am including him on the RB list). Brown was probably the best overall runner in NFL history, he had tremendous power, and speed. Brown could run over, and arounds defenders, he probably had the most fun running through 185 pound defensive backs. In his career, Brown was an All-pro, and Pro Bowler 9 times, and ran for 12,312 yards, and 106 TD's (plus 20 receiving TD's). If you look at Brown's stats, you may wonder why he's the number 1 RB on this list, but the explanation is simple, he played in an era where just about EVERYTHING was legal, so he had guys all over him, and he was still able to score 100+ TD's. Brown is, by far, the greatest runner in NFL history. Brown brought an NFL championship to Cleveland in 1964, and retired at age 29 two years later.

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Career Stats:

118 G, 118 GS, 2358 Rush ATT, 12312 Rush YDS, 106 Rush TD's, 104.3 Y/G, 5.2 YPC, 262 REC, 2499 REC YDS, 20 REC TD's, 57 fumbles

  • Inducted into Pro Football HOF in 1971


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