Top 20 Players with the Most Yards From Scrimmage in NFL History

Jerry Rice - Most Total Yards From Scrimmage in History

Jerry Rice – Most Total Yards From Scrimmage in History

This is a fun list, dominated by running backs, of course. They are more likely to catch passes than wide receivers running the ball. And so, 15 of the top 20 players with the most yards from scrimmage in NFL history are RBs.

But atop the list is a wide receiver, some say the greatest player of all time – Jerry Rice. He just caught so many and ran for so long after the catch. 22,895 of his 23,540 yards were from the air.

Emmitt Smith is in second – he caught balls for over 3,000 yards helping boost his total yards from scrimmage over 21,000.

The great Walter Payton is the third, and last, NFLer to log over 20,000 (21K, really) yards from the line.

You have at least one rogue running back in there – one that doesn’t rank as high on the all-time rushing yards list, but ranks here, thanks to all those receiving yards.

It’s Tiki Barber. He’s 23rd all time in rushing at 10, 449 yards, but he also has over 5,000 receiving yards to his credit.

UPDATED LIST: Through Week 14 of 2013. Tony Gonzalez has cracked the top 20. He’s the only tight end on the list.

PLAYER YARDS FROM SCRIMMAGE POS. CAREER SPAN
1. Jerry Rice 23,540 WR  1985-2004  
2. Emmitt Smith 21,579 RB  1990-2004  
3. Walter Payton 21,264 RB  1975-1987  
4. Marshall Faulk 19,154 RB  1994-2005  
5. LaDainian Tomlinson  18,456 RB  2001-2011  
6. Barry Sanders 18,190 RB  1989-1998  
7. Marcus Allen 17,654 RB  1982-1997  
8. Curtis Martin 17,430 RB  1995-2005  
9. Thurman Thomas 16,532 RB  1988-2000  
10. Tony Dorsett 16,293 RB  1977-1988  
11. Terrell Owens  16,185 WR  1996-2010  
12. Tiki Barber  15,632 RB  1997-2006  
13. Edgerrin James  15,610 RB  1999-2009  
14. Randy Moss  15,451 WR  1998-2012  
15. Eric Dickerson 15,396 RB  1983-1993  
16. Isaac Bruce  15,347 WR  1994-2009  
17. Warrick Dunn  15,306 RB  1997-2008  
18. Tim Brown  15,124 WR  1988-2004  
19. Jerome Bettis  15,111 RB  1993-2005  
20. Tony Gonzalez
14,960 TE  1997-present

Photo: photofile.com

Posted on November 17, 2013, in NFL Football and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. The only name we’re mildly surprised to see here is Warrick Dunn. Dunn had a great and lengthy career and did a lot of damage with the Bucs and Falcons – but do these numbers make him a HOF candidate?

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