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US Gambling Sites / Top 10 Running Backs of the 1980s

Top 10 Running Backs of the 1980s

Publish Date: 03/05/2023
Fact checked by: Mark Lewis

10) Gerald Riggs (Atlanta Falcons)

Riggs was recognized with three Pro Bowl appearances over this decade with over 7K yards rushed and 52 touchdowns scored.

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9) Billy Simms (Detroit Lions)

Injury derailed Billy Simms' career and limited him to only five seasons played during this decade; three times in those seasons alone, he gained over one thousand yards rushing.

8) Earl Campbell (Houston Oilers)

Campbell only played six seasons during the Decade and only managed to become dominant for three of them, yet still amassed more than six thousand rushing yards over that span. Unfortunately, following 1982 he went to an underperforming Saints team before leaving altogether after the 1988 season.

7) Curt Warner (Seattle Seahawks)

Warner was an incredible player who, but without injury issues, would likely rank much higher on our list. Warner was instrumental in turning the Seahawks into contenders by amassing over 6K rushing yards and 55 touchdowns during his time there.

6) Roger Craig(SF 49ers)

Craig was invaluable on some of the greatest teams in NFL history, earning 1000 yards rushing and receiving in 1985 alone! Craig should be honored for this accomplishment, but being on teams with Montana and Rice can often overshadow him.

5) Marcus Allen (Los Angeles Raiders)

Allen was one of the greatest all-round running backs ever seen on an American gridiron football field. A Super Bowl XVIII MVP, Allen amassed more than seven thousand rushing yards during his decade and almost four thousand receiving yards.

4) Otis Anderson (St.Louis Cardinals)

OJ made waves during this decade by having five one-thousand-yard seasons and only making one Pro Bowl game selection during his 10-year run despite scoring 69 touchdowns and amassing over nine thousand yards rushing.

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3) Tony Dorsett (Dallas Cowboys)

Dorsett amassed over 2,500 receiving yards and over 9000 rushing yards during this period - showing just what type of performer he could be for them!

2) Walter Payton (Chicago Bears)

He amassed nearly 10,000 yards rushing in a decade and over three thousand receiving. As one of their leaders, Payton helped guide the Bears to one Super Bowl Championship - and may well have been one of the greatest all-around running backs ever seen in football history.

1) Eric Dickerson

It was difficult to decide between Payton and Dickerson for my all-decade list; however, considering all that they accomplished during the decade, Dickerson is unquestionably the winner. Dickerson led all NFL running backs in total yards gained and led four times during that decade alone - including 248 yards run to lead Rams past Dallas during the 1985 Divisional playoffs! After being traded to Indianapolis Colts, he led them to their inaugural playoff appearance that year before losing against Cleveland Browns.

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