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Top Ten NFL Single-Season Rushing Yard Leaders

Learn About the NFL's Leading Single-Season Rushers

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Football tonight, folks! I’m so excited that I get to type that until February. Today, we’re going to continue looking at NFL all-time leaders with a top ten list devoted to rushers. We’ve already checked out career leaders in this category, but now we’re going to break down single-season rushing yard leaders. 

 

Top Ten NFL Single-Season Rushing Yard Leaders

USA TODAY Sports

1. In 1984, Eric Dickerson rushed for 2,105 yards while on the Los Angeles Rams squad. Dickerson’s record may have stood for 30 years, but I’m wiling to bet it’ll be broken before A.D. hangs up his cleats (see the No. 2 spot.) 

 

2. The Minnesota Vikings’ Adrian Peterson, who stands to go down in history as one of the NFL’s best RBs ever, had 2,097 yards during the 2012 season. I love to watch A.D. play and I’d like to see him break the all-time single-season record before retiring. Time (and Zimmer’s game plan) will tell.

 

3. Jamal Lewis, former Baltimore Ravens’ RB, racked-up 2,066 yards during the 2003 NFL season. 

 

4. Barry Sanders broke onto this top ten list for the second time (holding the No. 2 spot at the time) in 1997 when he amassed 2,053 yards for the Detroit Lions. 

 

5. In 1998, the Denver Broncos’ Terrell Davis rushed for 2,008 total yards. 

 

6. Chris Johnson, the only active player other than Peterson on this list, rushed for 2,006 yards during the 2009 season. Johnson was on the Tennessee Titans’ roster at the time. 

 

7. O.J. Simpson, whose name is now more infamous than famous, was a heck of a football player, all else aside. During the 1973 season, Simpson rushed for 2,003 yards for the Buffalo Bills. 

 

8. While playing for the 1980 Houston Oilers, Earl Campbell rushed for 1,934 yards. 

 

9. Barry Sanders’s first appearance on this list came during the 1994 season, when he racked-up 1,883 yards for the Detroit Lions. 

 

(9*) 10. Ahman Green, former RB for the Green Bay Packers, also had 1,883 yards one year. Green’s record was set during the 2003 season.

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