ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

AFL/NFL 1,000 Yard Rushers State by State Rank and Overview: Installment 1

Updated on November 27, 2014
Larry Rankin profile image

Larry Rankin analyzes sports, with an especially strong penchant for statistical breakdowns.

References

The following database was compiled using NFL.com, Profootballreference.com, and Wikipedia for reference.

If you find any information to be inaccurate in any way, not only would the author not mind your comments, he would appreciate them.

A Sports Almanac, the perfect gift for any sports nut.

In the history of AFL/NFL football the thousand yard rushing plateau has been equaled or surpassed on 589 occasions by 225 individuals. Though it is true that the 1,000 yard rushing mark in modern football is a less herculean accomplishment than in the game’s past history, when a back gets 1,000 yards or more in a season, it still means the same thing: that back had a very good year.

In our ongoing quest to distinguish the most impactful states on the game of football, Larry Rankin presents yet another database comparing state by state performances. This time we focus on 1,000 yard rushers, every one of them categorized in their respective birth states, statistical data in its entirety from every 1,000 yard rushing season.

For those of you unfamiliar with these state by state databases, here is how they work. Below you will find a table summarizing the totality of all the data. There are two ranking systems employed: a per capita scale which ranks production of the specified performance, in this case 1,000 yard rushing performances in relation to the state’s population.

This produces a per capita score. The per capita score is calculated by dividing the number of accomplishments by the state’s population, then removing all the zeros before the number to give a more visually palatable number.

The other ranking system is in shear mass of specified athletic performances per state.

The rest of this installment will provide a statistical list of each athlete from the top 5 per capita states to have 1,000 yards or more rushing. Subsequent installments will have detailed lists for each state in order of per capita score. The end of the final installment will have non-U.S. born and Washington, DC born athletes to exceed the 1,000 yard rushing mark.

For those of you interesting in other installments of this database, links can be found in the text box just above and to your right, as well as at the end of this installment.

For those of you interested in other state by state ranking databases, links can be found at the bottom of this installment or by visiting the Larry Rankin profile in the upper right-hand corner.

Overview of Thousand Yard Rushers by State

Per Capita Rank
Per Capita Score
No. Rushers Rank
1,000 Yard Performances
1. Louisiana
973
1. Texas
74
2. Mississippi
970
2. Florida
68
3. Kansas
587
3. Pennsylvania
53
4. Pennsylvania
415
4. California
49
5. Georgia
410
5. Louisiana
45
6. Florida
348
6. Georgia
41
7. Arkansas
338
7. Mississippi
29
8. Nevada
323
8. Virginia
22
9. Nebraska
321
9. Kansas
17
10. Texas
280
10. New Jersey
16
11. Virginia
266
t11. Illinois
15
12. West Virginia
216
t11. Michigan
15
13. New Jersey
180
13. Ohio
14
14. Maryland
169
14. North Carolina
13
15. South Carolina
168
15. New York
12
16. Alabama
166
t16. Arkansas
10
17. Michigan
152
t16. Maryland
10
18. Missouri
132.4
18. Nevada
9
19. North Carolina
132
t19. Alabama
8
20. Oklahoma
130
t19. Missouri
8
21. California
128
t19. South Carolina
8
22. Ohio
121
t19. Washington
8
23. Illinois
116
23. Nebraska
6
24. Washington
115
t24. Kentucky
5
25. Kentucky
114
t24. Oklahoma
5
26. Iowa
97
t26. Tennessee
4
27. Tennessee
62
t26. West Virginia
4
28. New York
61
t28. Iowa
3
29. Massachusetts
45
t28. Massachusetts
3
30. Wisconsin
35
t30. Indiana
2
31. Indiana
30
t30. Wisconsin
2
32. Connecticut
28
t32. Arizona
1
33. Colorado
19
t32. Colorado
1
34. Arizona
15
t32. Connecticut
1
N/A Washington, DC
N/A
N/A Washington, DC
3
N/A Honduras
N/A
N/A Honduras
2
N/A Nigeria
N/A
N/A Nigeria
2
N/A Canada
N/A
N/A Canada
1
Source

1. Louisiana

Per Capita Score: 973

1,000 Yard Rushing Performances: 45

Coming in first, as they did in per capita 1,000 yard receivers, is Louisiana. Louisiana is proving to be quite the veritable dynamo in production of athletes thus far in these state by state rankings.

If you look at Louisiana’s list of backs: Marshall Faulk, Jim Taylor, and Warrick Dunn are the biggest career performers, and then we have a number of backs, such as Gerald Riggs, whose windows of elite performance were no less spectacular but more short-lived

Unlike the 1,000 yard receivers lists, Louisiana has close company in per capita performance production at number 2.

Louisiana 1,000 Yard Rushing Performances

Year/Team
Name
Pos
Yds
Car
Avg
TD
Lg
1985 Atl Falcons
Gerald Riggs
RB
1,719
397
4.3
10
50
1984 Atl Falcons
Gerald Riggs
RB
1,486
353
4.2
13
57
1962 GB Packers
Jim Taylor
FB
1,474
272
5.4
19
51
2005 Atl Falcons
Warrick Dunn
RB
1,416
280
5.1
3
65
2001 Stl Rams
Marshall Faulk
RB
1,382
260
5.3
12
71
1999 Stl Rams
Marshall Faulk
RB
1,381
253
5.5
7
58
2000 Stl Rams
Marshall Faulk
RB
1,359
253
5.4
18
36
2013 Chi Bears
Matt Forte
RB
1,339
289
4.6
9
55
1986 Atl Falcons
Gerald Riggs
RB
1,327
343
3.9
9
31
1998 Ind Colts
Marshall Faulk
RB
1,319
324
4.1
6
68
1961 GB Packers
Jim Taylor
FB
1,307
243
5.4
15
53
1994 Ind Colts
Marshall Faulk
RB
1,282
314
4.1
11
52
1989 NO Saints
Dalton Hilliard
RB
1,262
344
3.7
13
40
1984 SF 49ers
Wendell Tyler
RB
1,262
246
5.1
7
40
2008 Chi Bears
Matt Forte
RB
1,238
316
3.9
8
50
1967 Hou Oilers
Hoyle Granger
FB
1,194
236
5.1
6
67
2004 Hou Texans
Domanick Williams
RB
1,188
302
3.9
13
44
2001 Chi Bears
Anthony Thomas
RB
1,183
278
4.3
7
46
2013 GB Packers
Eddie Lacy
RB
1,178
284
4.1
11
60
1964 GB Packers
Jim Taylor
FB
1,169
235
5.0
12
84
1988 NE Patriots
John Stephens
RB
1,168
297
3.9
4
52
1962 Pit Steelers
John Henry Johnson
FB
1,141
251
4.5
7
40
2006 Atl Falcons
Warrick Dunn
RB
1,140
286
4.0
4
90
2000 TB Bucs
Warrick Dunn
RB
1,133
248
4.6
8
70
1965 SD Chargers
Paul Lowe
RB
1,121
222
5.0
6
59
1979 LA Rams
Wendell Tyler
RB
1,109
218
5.1
9
63
2004 Atl Falcons
Warrick Dunn
RB
1,106
265
4.2
9
60
1960 GB Packers
Jim Taylor
FB
1,101
230
4.8
11
32
2012 Chi Bears
Matt Forte
RB
1,094
248
4.4
5
46
2012 Cin Bengals
BenJarvus Green-Ellis
RB
1,094
278
3.9
6
48
2008 NY Giants
Brandon Jacobs
RB
1,089
219
5.0
15
44
1995 Ind Colts
Marshall Faulk
RB
1,078
289
3.7
11
40
1981 LA Rams
Wendell Tyler
RB
1,074
260
4.1
12
69
1960 Stl Cardinals
John David Crow
RB
1,071
183
5.9
6
57
2010 Chi Bears
Matt Forte
RB
1,069
237
4.5
6
68
1997 Ind Colts
Marshall Faulk
RB
1,054
264
4.0
7
45
1964 Pit Steelers
John Henry Johnson
FB
1,048
235
4.5
7
45
2003 Hou Texans
Domanick Williams
RB
1,031
238
4.3
8
51
1998 TB Bucs
Warrick Dunn
RB
1,026
245
4.2
2
50
2003 Chi Bears
Anthony Thomas
RB
1,024
244
4.2
6
67
1963 GB Packers
Jim Taylor
FB
1,018
248
4.1
9
40
1962 Hou Oilers
Charley Tolar
FB
1,012
244
4.1
7
25
1963 SD Chargers
Paul Lowe
RB
1,010
177
5.7
8
66
2007 NY Giants
Brandon Jacobs
RB
1,009
202
5.0
4
43
2010 NE Patriots
BenJarvus Green-Ellis
RB
1,008
229
4.4
13
33
Source

2. Mississippi

Per Capita Score: 970

1,000 Yard Rushing Performances: 29

Trailing Louisiana on our list by just 3 points is Mississippi. With a small population and a penchant for producing great athletes, Mississippi has performed well in all of our state by state rankings thus far.

When one thinks of Mississippi and running backs, the first name that comes to mind is Walter Payton. With 10 career thousand yard seasons, he is one of a short list of backs to be considered as the greatest to ever play the game.

But Payton is not the sum total of Mississippi’s list. Clinton Portis, Wilbert Montgomery, and Deuce McAllister are some of the other backs out of Mississippi to have wonderful professional careers.

Mississippi 1,000 Yard Rushing Performances

Year/Team
Name
Pos
Yds
Car
Avg
TD
Lg
1977 Chi Bears
Walter Payton
RB
1,852
339
5.5
14
73
1984 Chi Bears
Walter Payton
RB
1,684
381
4.4
11
72
2003 NO Saints
Deuce McAllister
RB
1,641
351
4.7
8
76
1979 Chi Bears
Walter Payton
RB
1,610
369
4.4
14
43
2003 Den Broncos
Clinton Portis
RB
1,591
290
5.5
14
65
1985 Chi Bears
Walter Payton
RB
1,551
324
4.8
9
40
2005 Was Redskins
Clinton Portis
RB
1,516
352
4.3
11
47
1979 Phi Eagles
Wilbert Montgomery
RB
1,512
338
4.5
9
62
2002 Den Broncos
Clinton Portis
RB
1,508
273
5.5
15
59
2008 Was Redskins
Clinton Portis
RB
1,487
342
4.3
9
31
1980 Chi Bears
Walter Payton
RB
1,460
317
4.6
6
69
1983 Chi Bears
Walter Payton
RB
1,421
314
4.5
6
49
1981 Phi Eagles
Wilbert Montgomery
RB
1,402
286
4.9
8
41
1978 Chi Bears
Walter Payton
RB
1,395
333
4.2
11
76
1976 Chi Bears
Walter Payton
RB
1,390
311
4.5
13
60
2002 NO Saints
Deuce McAllister
RB
1,388
325
4.3
13
62
1986 Chi Bears
Walter Payton
RB
1,333
321
4.2
8
41
1985 NY Jets
Freeman McNeil
RB
1,331
294
4.5
3
69
2004 Was Redskins
Clinton Portis
RB
1,315
343
3.8
5
64
2012 NE Patriots
Stevan Ridley
RB
1,263
290
4.4
12
41
2007 Was Redskins
Clinton Portis
RB
1,262
325
3.9
11
32
1981 Chi Bears
Walter Payton
RB
1,222
339
3.6
6
39
1978 Phi Eagles
Wilbert Montgomery
RB
1,220
259
4.7
9
47
1984 Den Broncos
Sammy Winder
RB
1,153
296
3.9
4
24
1966 LA Rams
Dick Bass
FB
1,090
248
4.4
8
50
2004 NO Saints
Deuce McAllister
RB
1,074
269
4.0
9
71
1984 NY Jets
Freeman McNeil
RB
1,070
229
4.7
5
53
2006 NO Saints
Deuce McAllister
RB
1,057
244
4.3
10
57
1962 LA Rams
Dick Bass
FB
1,033
196
5.3
6
57
Source

A look into the rise of the NFL into America's favorite sporting event.

3. Kansas

Per Capita Score: 587

1,000 Yard Rushing Performances: 17

From 2 to 3 on our per capita ranking list of 1,000 yard rushers we have almost a 400 point drop off.

Kansas has only produced 3 thousand yard rushers, but they are 3 of the greatest running backs to ever play the game. Hall of Famer Barry Sanders is thought by many to be the greatest ever. Among his accomplishments: 10 thousand yard rushing performances in his 10 year career, over 15,000 career yards rushing, a 5 yard average per carry lifetime, and over 100 total career touchdowns.

John Riggins is another Hall of Famer with over 11,000 career rushing yards and 104 rushing touchdowns. The next back on the list, Gale Sayers, is also a Hall of Famer. His rushing stats are not as prominent for two reasons: he was a do everything back (run, receive, kick return, and punt return), and his career was cut short due to injury.

Kansas 1,000 Yard Rushing Performances

Year/Team
Name
Pos
Yds
Car
Avg
TD
Lg
1997 Det Lions
Barry Sanders
RB
2,053
335
6.1
11
82
1994 Det Lions
Barry Sanders
RB
1,883
331
5.7
7
85
1996 Det Lions
Barry Sanders
RB
1,553
307
5.1
11
54
1991 Det Lions
Barry Sanders
RB
1,548
342
4.5
16
69
1995 Det Lions
Barry Sanders
RB
1,500
314
4.8
11
75
1998 Det Lions
Barry Sanders
RB
1,491
343
4.3
4
73
1989 Det Lions
Barry Sanders
RB
1,470
280
5.3
14
34
1992 Det Lions
Barry Sanders
RB
1,352
312
4.3
9
55
1983 Was Redskins
John Riggins
RB
1,347
375
3.6
24
44
1990 Det Lions
Barry Sanders
RB
1,304
255
5.1
13
45
1984 Was Redskins
John Riggins
RB
1,239
327
3.8
14
24
1966 Chi Bears
Gale Sayers
RB
1,231
229
5.4
8
58
1979 Was Redskins
John Riggins
FB
1,153
260
4.4
9
66
1993 Det Lions
Barry Sanders
RB
1,115
243
4.6
3
42
1969 Chi Bears
Gale Sayers
RB
1,032
236
4.4
8
28
1978 Was Redskins
John Riggins
FB
1,014
248
4.1
5
31
1975 NY Jets
John Riggins
FB
1,005
238
4.2
8
42
Source

4. Pennsylvania

Per Capita Score: 415

1,000 Yard Rushing Performances: 53

Curtis Martin may be the least flashy running back to ever break 1,000 yards. He did things in such a put on your hard hat and go to work style, people overlook him, which is ridiculous, because he is one of the all-time greats. With 10 thousand yard performances, over 14,000 career rushing yards, and 100 total touchdowns, this first ballot Hall of Famer is woefully underappreciated.

Among the other notable backs from Pennsylvania, 10,000 yard career rushers Tony Dorsett, Eddie George, and Ricky Waters.

Obscure State: For those of you interested in obscure stats, Larry Johnson’s 416 carries in 2006 is the all-time record for rushing attempts in a season.

Pennsylvania 1,000 Yard Rushing Performances

Year/Team
Name
Pos
Yds
Car
Avg
TD
Lg
2006 KC Chiefs
Larry Johnson
RB
1,789
416
4.3
17
47
2005 KC Chiefs
Larry Johnson
RB
1,750
336
5.2
20
49
2004 NY Jets
Curtis Martin
RB
1,697
371
4.6
12
25
1981 Dal Cowboys
Tony Dorsett
RB
1,646
342
4.8
4
75
2013 Phi Eagles
LeSean McCoy
RB
1,607
314
5.1
9
57
2001 NY Jets
Curtis Martin
RB
1,513
333
4.5
10
47
2000 Ten Titans
Eddie George
RB
1,509
403
3.7
14
35
1995 NE Patriots
Curtis Martin
RB
1,487
368
4.0
14
49
1999 NY Jets
Curtis Martin
RB
1,464
367
4.0
5
50
1966 Bos Patriots
Jim Nance
FB
1,458
299
4.9
11
65
1996 Phi Eagles
Ricky Watters
RB
1,411
353
4.0
13
56
1997 Ten Oilers
Eddie George
RB
1,399
357
3.9
6
30
1996 Hou Oilers
Eddie George
RB
1,368
335
4.1
8
76
1978 Dal Cowboys
Tony Dorsett
RB
1,325
290
4.6
7
63
1983 Dal Cowboys
Tony Dorsett
RB
1,321
289
4.6
8
77
2011 Phi Eagles
LeSean McCoy
RB
1,309
273
4.8
17
60
2003 NY Jets
Curtis Martin
RB
1,308
323
4.0
2
56
1985 Dal Cowboys
Tony Dorsett
RB
1,307
305
4.3
7
60
1999 Ten Titans
Eddie George
RB
1,304
320
4.1
9
40
1998 Ten Oilers
Eddie George
RB
1,294
348
3.7
5
37
1998 NY Jets
Curtis Martin
RB
1,287
369
3.5
8
60
2008 Hou Texans
Steve Slaton
RB
1,282
268
4.8
9
71
1995 Phi Eagles
Ricky Watters
RB
1,273
337
3.8
11
57
2000 Sea Seahawks
Ricky Watters
RB
1,242
278
4.5
7
55
1968 Cle Browns
Leroy Kelly
RB
1,239
248
5.0
16
65
1998 Sea Seahawks
Ricky Watters
RB
1,239
319
3.9
9
39
1972 Was Redskins
Larry Brown
RB
1.216
285
4.3
8
38
1967 Bos Patriots
Jim Nance
FB
1.216
269
4.5
7
53
1999 Sea Seahawks
Ricky Watters
RB
1,210
325
3.7
5
45
1967 Cle Browns
Leroy Kelly
RB
1,205
235
5.1
11
42
2000 NY Jets
Curtis Martin
RB
1,204
316
3.8
9
55
1979 NO Saints
Chuck Muncie
RB
1,198
238
5.0
11
69
1984 Dal Cowboys
Tony Dorsett
RB
1,189
302
3.9
6
31
1980 Dal Cowboys
Tony Dorsett
RB
1,185
278
4.3
11
56
2002 Ten Titans
Eddie George
RB
1,165
343
3.4
12
35
1997 NE Patriots
Curtis Martin
RB
1,160
274
4.2
4
70
1996 NE Patriots
Curtis Martin
RB
1,152
316
3.6
14
57
1981 SD Chargers
Chuck Muncie
RB
1,144
251
4.6
19
73
1966 Cle Browns
Leroy Kelly
RB
1,141
209
5.5
15
70
2004 Det Lions
Kevin Jones
RB
1,133
241
4.7
5
74
1970 Was Redskins
Larry Brown
RB
1,125
237
4.7
5
75
1997 Phi Eagles
Ricky Watters
RB
1,110
285
3.9
7
28
1979 Dal Cowboys
Tony Dorsett
RB
1,107
250
4.4
6
41
1962 Buf Bills
Cookie Gilchrist
FB
1,096
214
5.1
13
44
2002 NY Jets
Curtis Martin
RB
1,094
261
4.2
7
35
2010 Phi Eagles
LeSean McCoy
RB
1,080
207
5.2
7
62
1998 NY Giants
Gary Brown
RB
1,063
247
4.3
5
45
2003 Ten Titans
Eddie George
RB
1,031
312
3.3
5
27
2003 SF 49ers
Kevan Barlow
RB
1,024
201
5.1
6
78
1992 SF 49ers
Ricky Watters
RB
1,013
206
4.9
9
43
1977 Dal Cowboys
Tony Dorsett
RB
1,007
208
4.8
12
84
1993 Hou Oilers
Gary Brown
RB
1,002
195
5.1
6
26
1972 Mia Dolphins
Mercury Morris
RB
1,000
190
5.3
12
33
Source

5. Georgia

Per Capita Score: 410

1,000 Yard Rushing Performances: 41

Jim Brown, with Barry Sanders, is the most commonly brought up name for greatest running back of all-time. It isn’t just that Brown had 7 thousand yard performances. It is that he did it in the 1950s and 60s, when seasons were 12 to 14 games long. Despite the lack of games, that he was a fullback, that he only played 9 seasons, he still finished with over 12,000 rushing yards and 106 rushing touchdowns.

In addition, Georgia has a number of other notable backs such as Jamal Lewis, George Rogers, and Herschel Walker.

Georgia 1,000 Yard Rushing Performances

Year/Team
Name
Pos
Yds
Car
Avg
TD
Lg
2003 Bal Ravens
Jamal Lewis
RB
2,066
387
5.3
14
82
1963 Cle Browns
Jim Brown
FB
1,863
291
6.4
12
80
1981 NO Saints
George Rogers
RB
1,674
378
4.4
13
79
1998 SF 49ers
Garrison Hearst
RB
1,570
310
5.1
7
96
1983 Atl Falcons
William Andrews
RB
1,567
331
4.7
7
27
1965 Cle Browns
Jim Brown
FB
1,544
289
5.3
17
67
1958 Cle Browns
Jim Brown
FB
1,527
257
5.9
17
65
1988 Dal Cowboys
Herschel Walker
RB
1,514
361
4.2
5
38
1964 Cle Browns
Jim Brown
FB
1,446
280
5.2
7
71
1961 Cle Browns
Jim Brown
FB
1,408
305
4.6
8
38
2000 Bal ravens
Jamal Lewis
RB
1,364
309
4.4
6
45
1996 Was Redskins
Terry Allen
RB
1,353
347
3.9
21
39
1959 Cle Browns
Jim Brown
FB
1,329
290
4.6
14
70
2002 Bal Ravens
Jamal Lewis
RB
1,327
308
4.3
6
75
1995 Was Redskins
Terry Allen
RB
1,309
338
3.9
10
28
1980 Atl Falcons
William Andrews
FB
1,308
265
4.9
4
33
2007 Cle Browns
Jamal Lewis
RB
1,304
298
4.4
9
66
1981 Atl Falcons
William Andrews
FB
1,301
289
4.5
10
29
1960 Cle Browns
Jim Brown
FB
1,257
215
5.8
9
71
1990 SD Chargers
Marion Butts
RB
1,225
265
4.6
8
52
1990 Was Redskins
Earnest Byner
RB
1,219
297
4.1
6
22
2001 SF 49ers
Garrison Hearst
RB
1,206
252
4.8
4
43
1986 Was Redskins
George Rogers
RB
1,203
303
4.0
18
42
1992 Min Vikings
Terry Allen
RB
1,201
266
4.5
13
51
1983 NO Saints
George Rogers
RB
1,144
256
4.5
5
76
2006 Bal Ravens
Jamal Lewis
RB
1,132
314
3.6
9
52
1998 NE Patriots
Robert Edwards
RB
1,115
291
3.8
9
53
1985 Was Redskins
George Rogers
RB
1,093
231
4.7
7
35
1981 Cin Bengals
Pete Johnson
FB
1,077
274
3.9
12
39
1995 Ari Cardinals
Garrison Hearst
RB
1,070
284
3.8
1
38
1992 Phi Eagles
Herschel Walker
RB
1,070
267
4.0
8
38
1978 Buf Bills
Terry Miller
RB
1,060
238
4.5
7
60
1991 Was Redskins
Earnest Byner
RB
1,048
274
3.8
5
32
1994 Min Vikings
Terry Allen
RB
1,031
255
4.0
8
45
1979 Atl Falcons
William Andrews
FB
1,023
239
4.3
3
23
1997 SF 49ers
Garrison Hearst
RB
1,019
234
4.4
4
51
2006 Mia Dolphins
Ronnie Brown
RB
1,008
241
4.2
5
47
2004 Bal Ravens
Jamal Lewis
RB
1,006
235
4.3
7
75
1985 Stl Cardinals
Stump Mitchell
RB
1,006
183
5.5
7
64
1985 Cle Browns
Earnest Byner
RB
1,002
244
4.1
8
36
2008 Cle Browns
Jamal Lewis
RB
1,002
279
3.6
4
29

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    Click to Rate This Article