Best Football Running Backs of All TimeDon't agree with the list? Vote for an existing item you think should be ranked higher or if you are a logged in, add a new item for others to vote on or create your own version of this list.
The Top Ten
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Heisman. Held NCAA all time rushing record until Ricky Williams. College hall of fame. Nfl Super Bowl winner. Nfl hall of fame. One of the few who dominated in every level of football
The combination of great speed, patience, hole selection and deceptive power. Jack Lambert called him one of the most powerful backs he ever played against. Smart, not to run over everyone and fast enough not to need to run over everyone. Definitely would be in top 10 if he played on different team in his prime that would have featured him.
Greatest ever. If he ran behind the offensive line that Emmitt Smith did, he would have the most yards ever... Not EmmittMore comments about Tony Dorsett
It is harder to find a more inspirational moment in the game of the football than "the immaculate reception" and the trans formative effect it had on one of the greatest teams in history and on the career of this--certainly one of the top five. Power, speed, attitude, and LUCK. I'd rather be lucky than good--Franco was both.
how in the world is franco below stinking bush and these other no names back
really? Brian westbrook and chris johnson ahead of Franco harris I say he should be in the top tenMore comments about Franco Harris
Come on talk about a workhouse, ten seasons over 1000 yards, number 4 all time in rushing, with Testeverde and Pennington as his QB's, who both had season ending injuries. C-Mart not as flashy as Tomlinson or Peterson, but consistency is key.
Curtis Martin....What a player. He was drafted in the 3rd round and look where he got. He had 10+ 1000 yard seasons, and probably would've had 11 if he wasn't injured. I'd rate him 4th. Barry #1, Walter #2, Emmit #3, and Curtis #4. He was so consistent, and even at his 10th season, he had his career year.
He had the incredible consistency of 10 straight 1000 yard sesasons including 1 rushing title in 2004.More comments about Curtis Martin
if your gonna put him low in your rankings, at least put him in the 20's or something higher because this is just bullcrap. he is one of the best in today's football I think
As soon as he stops sharing carries with Fred Taylor Maurice will be dominating defenses. He's extremely fast and he can blow over defenders.
He got swag
he is smart
he is fast
he is big
he is black
he has drew brees as QB
he is hella fast
has 700+ reception yards with 9 Tds
averages 6.9 yards per carry
so he is the best rb of all time.
he is in top 100
THarmMore comments about Chris Johnson
He should be up there with Terrell Davis. One of the strongest back in NFL history.
Adrian Peterson ahead of Csonka as well as OJ, marcus A. Franco, Riggins, Foreman, dorsett, Sayers, Campbell, Dickerson. and Reggie Bush hadn't proved a thing and Bo didn't even play long enough. Darren Mcffaden being one # behind csonka is a disgrace to Zonk. Not saying these guys aren't great, just not proven!
Larry Csonka is way higher then number 32 on the alltime best running backs. You should all go home lay down and think about where you put him. Boo hoo
one of the all time greats should be top 15 way better than cedric bensonMore comments about Larry Csonka
Career cut short but should be in the top 20 all time. A dynamic runner with power and speed.
If you wear #20 in Detroit, then you must be special, and Billy Sims was! We used to call Barry Sanders, Billy Jr, as he wore #20 with pride as well. Sims could gallop down the sidelines for 80 yards while leaving everyone in his dust hence "another one bites the dust. " If he didn't get injured the current running backs would still be trying to break HIS records!
He's the fastest recorded running back ever and he is number 28 he's got 12000 yards rushing for crying out loud
10,000 yards and counting...
Thurmanator best all purpose back ever don't sleep on the fact barry backed him up. G. o. a. t
This guys the best i mean he has been to 5 pro bowls went to 4 super bowls and is on the bills wall of fame and hes a 2nd round pick(40) this guys the best
Could do it all. Run, catch, block and shared the ball with other big time players. A team leader as well... Payton hillis? Darren sproles(that's a joke, right? ) tiki barber? Gimme a break
Ricky Williams is the man, just look at his old highlights he kicked some major ass!
are you guys kiddin me! ricky williams is the best ever.
Herschel is the greatest man to ever step on a football feild, he has god given talent...... he just lost his chance, he got shafted....
usfl team went to title all years when he played with them
best back id say
Wouldl you take the time to talk to me. It might be a matter of life and death. I watched your special tonightt and I want you you help me. Please
I'm not going to kill myself, but need to talk to you.
Ahmad Bradshaw is better then whoever is at the top of this daggone list go Giants.
most rushing yards of 2006 season did very well last year and did not even start all the games better then some of the other backs listed
two Heisman Trophy awards
he fast strong run over big men playing for yers and 71 tochdowns
mike alstott is the best back he ran people over like nothing he dragged people across the field he carried people on his back while he ran he should be in top 3 because he was a freight train if anything got in his way he would destroy it!
He is this low because of Steve Atwater, who did tried to tackle him head on and laid him out. He retired soon after as a result of that blow.
The Nigerian Nightmare! If you tried to tackle this guy head on he would level you. How is he this low on this list?
big dude dig heart runs people ever. Best ever period.
So underrated hes twice the back that Ricky Williams and Cedric Benson are.
AMAZING 5 ONE THOUSAND YARD RUSHING SEASONS!
This entire list blows. The edge this far down proves it.
Yo give the cat some love. Lets be serious when he was on the Colts and healthy you were guaranteed at least 1,300 yards. He could have been better but playing alongside Manning, Manning got more touches. He also made Manning better by removing pressure through the play-action. Manning, Harrison, and James (The Modern Triplets), sure they don't have 3 rings like Aikman, Smith, and Irvin but don't doubt their skills. If James didn't "run" for the money he might also have a ring by now. Should be in top 20.
He's averaging more than LTMore comments about Edgerrin James
Best stiff arm ever...no doubt about it.
Rushed for over 2,000 a couple of years ago and still going strong!!
maybe not the best but a pioneer, and an excellent runner, and for that he deserves recognition
He just keeps putting up numbers, Beast of a player. Gets picked up by KC and everyone thought it was to back up Jamal Charles... But no it wasn't he had starter written all over him. He is 2nd only to LT for yards gained currently playing in the NFL
One of the first, greatest running back in football history. Paving the way for newer legends. Easily one of the best backs ever to play the sport.
As one of the first black players in modern pro football, Motley was a pioneer for his sport, much like his baseball contemporary, Jackie Robinson. And like Robinson, Motley had to endure far more physical and verbal abuse than white ballplayers of his era. The Cleveland Browns’ fullback often took extra shots to his head or hands on the bottom of the pile after being tackled. However, that pile was usually several yards beyond the line of scrimmage because Motley, a bruiser at 6-1, 240, was very hard to tackle. “If you didn’t stop him at the line of scrimmage, you were in trouble,” Baltimore Colts’ Hall of Fame defensive tackle Art Donovan said.
Motley, along with quarterback Otto Graham, helped Cleveland win the All-American Football Conference title for four straight seasons. The Browns joined the NFL in 1950 and Motley, at age 30, led his new team to a championship and his new league in rushing with 810 yards and a gaudy 5.8 yards-per-carry average. In 1968, Motley became the first black player to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Watch old film this guy killed people at his play
The greatest before the greatest(PAYTON) YAWLL got to be up on this!
All he did was run over around and through would-be-tacklers.
Only Division I player in history to run for more than 2000 yards in back to back seasons
Abner was far and away a better back then 80% you have on your list. Fast, elusive, tough... Could run and catch, return K.O. S et al. MVP of the AFL in its first year. 22 T.D. S in '62 Dallas texans Chapionship year... You're dreaming to put so many other mediocre backs ahead of him!
Chris burford texans/Chiefs 60-67
5.9 yard average, needs to stay healthy. will be something special if he is started next year.
Helped Broncos reach SuperBowl XXIV!
Great White Hope ! The man was amazing come playoff time ! Oh and don't forget Sydney Thorton , Tim Worley , Bam Morris , Barry Foster , Rocky Blier , Gordy Lockbomb , Yeah you read that right Gordy from Holly Cross drafted by the Mighty Steelers !!!!
Fat boy can run the ball.
Just because he was a running back for Southern California, doesn't mean he belongs in the category as th
Paul Lowe of Oregon State University played for the Los Angeles and San Diego Chargers from 1960 through 1968. His blazing speed helped him gain nearly 5, 000 yards, the Chargers' all-time best, as is his 4. 89 yards-per-carry average, which was also the AFL's all-time best. He returned his first touch of the football in the American Football League for a 105 yard touchdown in the Chargers first-ever exhibition game, and had the Chargers' longest run from scrimmage with an 87-yard run in 1961. He had 1, 010 yards on just 136 carries for a 5. 7 yard average in 1963 and was the American Football League MVP in 1965 with 1, 121 yards rushing (14-game schedule), a two-time all-American Football League selection, and a halfback on the AFL's All-Time Team. Lowe had the American Football League's all-time highest rushing average, at 4. 89 yds/carry, and set a pro football record with six games in which he gained 100 or more yards on 14 or fewer carries. He is one of only twenty players who were in the American Football League for its entire ten-year existence.
Clem Daniels of PRAIRIE VIEW A&M University was voted to All-Conference honors during his sophomore and junior years, and captained the NAIA National Championship team in his senior year. He was voted into Prairie View's Hall of Fame in 1992 and the California Black Athletic Hall of Fame in 1993. Daniels was drafted in 1960 by the Dallas Texans. He was on the Texans' roster for 14 games in 1960, but saw little playing time behind Hall of Famer Abner Haynes. In 1961, he was traded to the Oakland Raiders, and spent seven stellar years there. He was an American Football League All-Star in 1963, '64, '65, '66 and '67.
In 1963, Daniels was the Sporting News' American Football League Most Valuable Player, with a 5. 1 yards/carry average, gaining 1, 099 yards. He was the All-Time leading rusher in the American Football League and was selected to the All-Time All-AFL Team.
He was the best pure runner I had ever seen coming out of OU. Good to break at least on long td run a game.
College one of the best running back... Big! Fast! Strong! What a talent this football player he was. Played in the USFL but he got injured and did not have a chance to demonstrate his skill in the NFL just as a back up for the LA Ram.
One of the best college backs ever but got injured in the pro level
Great back for a great team and willed the Eagles to wins. Solid back who could hit the hole hard and still had breakaway speed. Too bad most have forgotten about him.
He is a tank. He's the beast on the field. He should be number 1 baby. Lets go beanie #1
Tough inside runner that gave morton and stabuch a good running game to open up the passing game. Also a change of pace to walt garrison.
Hall of Fame running back that was one of the first big time runners to play in the league. Should be on this list
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Updated Monday, December 09, 2013