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Kansas City Chiefs’ All-Time Rushing Leaders (Yardage)

Updated on January 20, 2009

Priest Holmes

Larry Johnson

The Kansas City Chiefs began as the Dallas Texans in 1960 and moved to KC in 1963. They moved from the AFL to the NFL in the merger of 1970, and lost to Green Bay in Super Bowl I. They also won a Super Bowl, Super Bowl IV, over Minnesota, but have not made it to the big game since. The Chiefs play in predominantly cold weather Missouri, so they have focused on a good running game much of the time. Here is a list of the team’s all-time Top 10 in rushing yards:

Priest Holmes (6070)—For a few seasons, Priest Holmes was the best fantasy football player in the NFL, until LaDainian Tomlinson came along. Holmes began his career with Baltimore, but blossomed behind a big offensive line in Kansas City and was as dominant a player for a few years as the NFL has ever seen. Holmes played for the Chiefs from 2001 to 2007, minus all of 2006 and a lot of other games late in his career because of injury. But he was a first team All Pro three straight years, and ranks first in Chiefs’ history with 6070 rushing yards. Holmes had his best season on 2002, when he rushed for a career high 1615 yards with 21 rushing touchdowns, adding 70 receptions for another 672 yard and 3 more TDs out of the backfield. The 2287 yards from scrimmage for Holmes that season is ninth best in NFL history for a single season.

Larry Johnson (5638)—Larry Johnson took over for Holmes when Holmes was injured and is still the #1 back in KC as I write this following the 2008 season. But Johnson has battled injury and off-field issues, and that may eventually keep him second on this list with 5638 rushing yards in a Chiefs’ uniform. Johnson has been with Kansas City since coming into the league in 2003 and had his best season filling in for Holmes in 2006. That year, Johnson was first team All Pro with a career high 1789 rushing yards and 17 rushing TDs, adding 41 catches for 410 yards and 2 more touchdowns as a receiver.

Christian Okoye (4897)—Christian Okoye was a Nigerian born player and came into the NFL with a vengeance in 1987. He played his entire career for the Chiefs, from 1987 to 1992 and ranks third in team history with 4897 rushing yards. Okoye’s best season was 1989, when he was first team All Pro with career highs in rushing yards (1480) and rushing scores (12).

Ed Podolak (4451)—Ed Podolak played his entire career in Kansas City, from 1969 to 1977, and ranks fourth in franchise history with 4451 rushing yards. Podolak never put up huge numbers, but was consistent, rushing for over 500 yards five times. His best season was 1970, when Podolak rushed for a career best 749 yards with 3 TDs, adding 26 catches for 307 yards and one more touchdown out of the backfield.

Abner Haynes (3814)—Abner Haynes played for the Chiefs from 1960 to 1964, and still ranks fifth in the team’s history with 3814 rushing yards. Haynes had his best season in 1962 when the franchise was still based in Dallas, rushing for career highs in yards (1049) and touchdowns (13), while catching 39 passes for another 573 yards and 6 more TDs as a receiver. Those numbers earned Haynes first team All Pro status for the second time in his career.

Marcus Allen (3698)—Marcus Allen may be best remembered from his playing days with the Raiders, but he finished his career with the Chiefs from 1993 to 1997. Allen piled up 3698 rushing yards over that time, which ranks him sixth in Chiefs’ history to this point. His best season in Kansas City was 1993, when he made the Pro Bowl by rushing for 764 yards with 12 rushing scores, adding 34 catches for 238 yards and 3 more TDs out of the backfield.

Mike Garrett (3246)—Mike Garrett was with the Chiefs from 1966 to 1970, and was part of the team that lost to Green Bay in the first Super Bowl. Garrett ranks seventh in franchise history with 3246 rushing yards, and his best season in Kansas City was 1967, when he was first team All Pro. That year, Garrett rushed for career highs in yards (1087) and touchdowns (9), adding 46 catches for 261 yards and one more TD as a receiver.

Curtis McClinton (3124)—Curtis McClinton played for the Texans/Chiefs’ franchise his entire career, from 1962 to 1969. He ranks eighth in team history with 3124 rushing yards, and his best season was 1965. That year, McClinton rushed for career highs in yards (661) and rushing TDs (6), while catching 37 passes for another 590 yards and another 3 more touchdowns as well.

Herman Heard (2694)—Herman Heard played for Kansas City from 1984 to 1989 (his whole career) and ranks ninth in franchise history with 2694 rushing yards. Heard had is best season his rookie year of 1984, rushing for a career best 684 yards with 4 rushing scores, and adding 25 catches for another 223 yards out of the backfield.

Wendell Hayes (2560)—Wendell Hayes played for the Chiefs for most of his career, from 1968 to 1974. He still ranks tenth in team history with 2560 rushing yards, and his best season in a Chiefs’ uniform was 1965. That year, Hayes rushed for 526 yards (his career high was 537 in 1971) with a career best 5 rushing touchdowns, and he added 24 receptions for 294 yards and 2 more TDs as well.


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