Top Ten NFL Running Backs of All Time

letdot52

The Top Ten

1 Barry Sanders Barry Sanders Barry Sanders is a former American football running back who spent his entire professional career with the Detroit Lions of the National Football League.

Barry sanders is the best obviously he brought the running back level to a whole new level

Who is Barry sanders

He is the best

Jim Brown averaged 5.2 yards per carry and Barry only had 5.0 that is there only difference

I wasn’t even a Lions fan but would watch them to see Barry play. His balance, strength and speed was a thing of beauty. For a decade, he averaged over 1,500 yards and 10 touchdowns per season. His OL was usually mediocre to bad and still he put up enormous numbers. If he would have played for Dallas, he probably would have ran for well over 2,000 yards and 20 touchdowns per season. Detroit coaches always cheated him near the goal line.

V 9 Comments
2 Walter Payton Walter Payton Walter Jerry Payton was an American football running back who played for the Chicago Bears of the National Football League for thirteen seasons.

To quote Madden NFL 2005: "Walter Payton was selected to 9 Pro Bowls in his 13-year career. The best ever! "

Again people he could juke truck spin had speed and my opinion is WALTER IS 1!

The best all around

He should be ahead of Barry Sanders - 2storm

V 1 Comment
3 Emmitt Smith Emmitt Smith Emmitt James Smith III is a former college and professional American football running back who became the National Football League's all-time leading rusher during his fifteen seasons in the league during the 1990s and 2000s.

Yes he also had Michael Irvin,Troy Aikman and the best offensive line in NFL history which included Larry allen. And he had jerry Jones as owner who is considered won of the best owners ever and he had a great coach the only reason he succeeded was because he was put into a great position to be great

If you have more yards gained than anyone else that makes you best. I know, he played in more games than others mentioned. That makes his rushing yardage even more impressive. He was able to play in more games, and stayed hyealthy.

All time rushing leader, need I say more.

Most rushing yards & 3 rings.

V 2 Comments
4 Jim Brown Jim Brown James Nathaniel Brown is a former professional American football player and actor. He was a running back for the Cleveland Browns of the National Football League from 1957 through 1965.

Jimmy Brown was the best running back of his, or any other time. At 6'2", 230 lbs. with 9.7 speed in the 100 yard dash, Brown was the best combination of size, power, balance, speed and durability (He never missed a game in 9 years) ever. When you consider he only played 12 game seasons... and retired still at the height of his powers, his records (per game) are still the best ever. And... He was a very good receiver, also. Sure, he did not block, but, he was not asked to. They did not ask him to kick field goals either, but, he was pretty good at that, too. (look it up)

It's hard to comprehend how amazing of aback he was because he did so much at Syracuse... Everything and he was the best at all.
He was literally running the game and everyone else was trying to catch up and attempt to bring this monster down

EMMIT SMITH SHOULD BE IN THE NUMBER 3spot if not #2

5 Eric Dickerson Eric Dickerson Eric Demetric Dickerson is a former college and professional American football player who was a running back in the National Football League for eleven seasons during the 1980s and 1990s.

He has th emost yards ever in a season

He should be 5tg

Be in top 4

6 Marshall Faulk Marshall Faulk Marshall William Faulk is a former college and professional football player who was a running back in the National Football League for twelve seasons. V 1 Comment
7 LaDainian Tomlinson

Breaks into the clear

Should easily be in top 10 at least

He was pretty darn amazing

WHY SO LOW?!

8 Adrian Peterson Adrian Peterson Adrian Lewis Peterson is an American football running back who originally played for the Minnesota Vikings and currently plays for the Arizona Cardinals of the National Football League.

He should be rank 3 because of his intense strength and his loyalty to tell the truth to everyone and everything and he has broken the record for the most rushing yards in one season WITHOUT the extension of the playoffs

"All Day" is the consummate running back with size, speed and strength. He can run by you or through you.

Beating your children does not represent the talent you have out on the gridiron.

He is the BEAST OF RUNNING

V 6 Comments
9 Earl Campbell Earl Campbell Earl Christian Campbell is a former American football running back who played professionally in the National Football League for the Houston Oilers and New Orleans Saints.

Earl was a pleasure to watch, you could see the passion he had for the game in the way he carried himself day in and day out. No one person was going to stop Earl, he could run around you but what fun was in that he preferred to run through you and then over you and if he had to he could out run you. Show me a back that had a higher level combination of strength and speed and that played in his era with no offensive line against probably the best dynasty of all time in the Pittsburgh Steelers with 9 Hall of Famers to 0 for the Oilers and then I would concede that Earl should be second, but in my opinion there isn't one. But the most impressive thing to me was the person Earl was, never a showboat let his play on the field do the talking. He would never throw is teammates under the bus, he was the consummate team player.

Sorry he's number 11 on here but he should be top 5 still

U moron! first of all adrian Peterson top 5 if not even on this list. You can't have Beastmode and Jamaal Charles ahead of Peterson

10 O.J. Simpson O.J. Simpson Orenthal James "O. J." Simpson, nicknamed The Juice, is a former National Football League running back, broadcaster, actor, advertising spokesman, and convicted robber.

Maybe if he wasn't a serial killer like Hillary Clinton, than he would be a top 5

overrated

I think OJ is a great running back, but I think he is overrated. No doubt he is one of the best of all time. But out of 11 years he only had 5 years with 1000+ yard season and 2 seasons with 10+ touchdowns. Now you can argue that the Nfl had only 14 games a team, but would 2 games really make a huge difference especially if Oj had no problems getting good stats anyways. And when you look at his 2000 yard year, the bills Qb had around 900 passing yards 4 touchdowns and 100 less attempts than Oj; it's not going to be to hard to rush for 2000 yards when you're running the ball 75% of the time.I think Ladanian and Dorsett deserve to be above him at least.

O.J. is bad person and should not be in the top ten.He is a stupid $&@$! 7% murder.

V 2 Comments

The Contenders

11 Bo Jackson Bo Jackson

Best he is faster than marshawn lynch and he is better and stronger bigger and just better

Hands down the best

Clearly the best

How tf is he this low

12 Gale Sayers Gale Sayers Gale Eugene Sayers, also known as "The Kansas Comet", is a former American college and professional football player who was a running back in the National Football League for seven seasons during the 1960s and early 1970s.
13 Marshawn Lynch Marshawn Lynch Marshawn Terrell Lynch is an American football running back for the Oakland Raiders of the National Football League. He previously played for the Buffalo Bills and Seattle Seahawks, winning one Super Bowl in Seattle. Lynch initially retired from professional football in 2016, but returned in 2017 to ...read more.

It is funny how everyone wants to compare him to other running backs too. Shows his talent there too.

He is the funnest running back to watch! Straight power, and entertainment!

Nobody can get his hands around him

Beast Mode! - steelers1979

V 2 Comments
14 LeSean McCoy LeSean McCoy LeSean Kamel McCoy also known as "Shady" is an American football running back for the Buffalo Bills of the National Football League.

It's Always Shady at the Linc

A BEAST

15 Jerome Bettis
16 Curtis Martin
17 Tony Dorsett Tony Dorsett
18 Franco Harris Franco Harris Franco Harris is a former American football player. He played his NFL career with the Pittsburgh Steelers and Seattle Seahawks. In the 1972 NFL Draft he was picked up by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the first round, the 13th selection overall.
19 Marcus Allen

Marcus Allen should be top 10. Super Bowl MVP and Broke all kinds of records despite being benched for 3 years.

Did everything well, definitely Top 10

20 Terrell Davis Terrell Davis Terrell Lamar Davis is a former American football running back who played for the Denver Broncos of the National Football League from 1995 to 2001.

Led broncos to Super Bowl along with elway

NO WAY Terrell is the man he should be at 4

I'm gonna guess your a Broncos fan he should not be at 4

21 Edgerrin James Edgerrin James Edgerrin Tyree James is a former American football running back who played in the National Football League for eleven seasons.
22 Larry Csonka
23 Thurman Thomas
24 Le'Veon Bell Le'Veon Bell Le'Veon Andrew Bell is an American football running back for the Pittsburgh Steelers of the National Football League.

He is the most athletic and best running back in the whole world he is a beast

The best ever! Should be number 1 without a doubt

He is the most athletic he is a beast

25 Jamaal Charles Jamaal Charles Jamaal RaShaad Jones Charles is an American football running back for the Kansas City Chiefs of the National Football League.
26 Eddie Lacy Eddie Lacy Eddie Darwin Lacy, Jr. is an American football running back for the Green Bay Packers of the National Football League.
27 Jason Williams
28 Rashard Mendenhall
29 Reshard Mendenhall
30 Matt Forte Matt Forte Matthew Garrett Forte is an American football running back for the New York Jets in the National Football League.
31 DeMarco Murray DeMarco Murray DeMarco Murray is an American football running back for the Tennessee Titans of the National Football League.

He is awesome and can never get tackled.

32 Jamal Anderson
33 Trent Richardson Trent Richardson
34 Mark Ingram Jr. Mark Ingram Jr. Mark Ingram, Jr. is an American football running back for the New Orleans Saints of the National Football League.
35 Brian Piccolo
36 John Riggins
37 LeGarrette Blount LeGarrette Blount

I think legarette Blount is a very high quality player so he should get a spot

38 Ezekiel Elliott Ezekiel Elliott Ezekiel Elijah Elliott is an American football running back for the Dallas Cowboys of the National Football League. He played college football at Ohio State, where he earned second-team All-America honors in 2015.

Absolute beast and who knows what he'll be in the future

Absolute beast and who knows what he'll do in the future

39 Devonta Freeman Devonta Freeman Devonta Freeman is an American football running back for the Atlanta Falcons of the National Football League.

Freeman is a beast. He should be in the top 15

40 Eddie George Eddie George Edward Nathan George Jr. is a former college and professional American football player who was a running back in the National Football League for nine seasons.
BAdd New Item

Related Lists

Best NFL Running Backs Going Into the 2018 Season Top 10 NFL Running Back Busts of All Time Top 10 Running Back NFL Teams Top 10 NFL Running Backs Going Into the 2018 Season Best NFL Running Backs of the 2018-2019 Season

List Stats

200 votes
40 listings
4 years, 12 days old

Top Remixes (16)

1. Barry Sanders
2. Walter Payton
3. Jim Brown
RPD6478
1. Barry Sanders
2. Walter Payton
3. Jim Brown
steelers1979
1. Walter Payton
2. Adrian Peterson
3. LaDainian Tomlinson
2storm

WRemix
View All 16

Error Reporting

See a factual error in these listings? Report it here.
P