- Sports and Recreation
New Orleans Saints’ All-Time Rushing Yardage Leaders
The New Orleans Saints have been a tough luck franchise since coming into the league in 1967, and are one of just a handful of franchises that have never made it to a Super Bowl. But this team has had some really great players over the years, probably most notably Archie Manning, father of Peyton and Eli. And they now have Reggie Bush and Drew Brees and a high-flying offense (as I write this in 2009). Here are the Saints’ all-time leading rushers to date:
Deuce McAllister (6096)—Deuce McAllister has been with the Saints since being drafted out of Mississippi in 2001, and he is the franchise’s leading rusher with 6096 yards on the ground. McAllister has made the Pro Bowl twice, though not since 2003. That was also his best season, rushing for a career high 1641 yards with 8 rushing touchdowns, and adding 69 catches for 516 yards, giving Deuce a whopping 2157 yards from scrimmage.
George Rogers (4267)—George Rogers only played four seasons in New Orleans, from 1981 to 1984, but still ranks second in team history with 4267 rushing yards. Rogers made the Pro Bowl twice, including first team All Pro his rookie year. That was also his best season, rushing for a career high 1674 yards (led the NFL) with 13 touchdowns, and adding 16 receptions for another 126 yards out of the backfield.
Dalton Hilliard (4164)—Dalton Hilliard played his entire career in New Orleans, from 1986 to 1993, and is third in Saints’ history with 4164 rushing yards. Hilliard’s best season was in 1989 when he made the Pro Bowl. That year, Hilliard rushed for 1262 yards and 13 rushing TDs (both career highs), as well as 52 catches for 514 yards and 5 more touchdowns as a receiver.
Reuben Mayes (3408)—Reuben Mayes played the first four years of his career with the Saints, from 1986 to 1990, missing the 1989 season. Mayes ranks fourth in franchise history with 3408 rushing yards, and his best season in New Orleans was his rookie year, one of two seasons he made the Pro Bowl. That year, Mayes rushed for 1353 yards with 8 TDs, and added 17 catches for 96 yards as well.
Chuck Muncie (3393)—Chuck Muncie began his career in New Orleans in 1976 and played there until being dealt to the Chargers in 1980. But Muncie ranks fifth in Saints’ history with 3393 rushing yards, and his best season in New Orleans was 1979, when he made the Pro Bowl by rushing for a career best 1198 yards with 11 rushing scores, and caught 40 passes for another 308 yards out of the backfield.
Ricky Williams (3129)—It’s hard to imagine Ricky Williams in a uniform other than Miami’s, but he began his career with the Saints in 1999 and played in New Orleans for three seasons. Williams ranks sixth in team history with 3129 rushing yards, and though his career took off with the Dolphins, he had a great season with the Saints in 2001. That year, Williams rushed for 1245 yards and 6 rushing touchdowns, adding 60 catches for another 511 yards and one more TD as a receiver.
Tony Galbreath (2865)—Fullback Tony Galbreath began his career in New Orleans, playing there from 1976 to 1980, and ranks seventh in Saints’ history with 2865 rushing yards. Galbreath put up his best numbers in a Saints’ uniform, and had his best season with them in 1979. That year, Galbreath rushed for career highs in yards (708) and rushing scores (9), adding 58 catches for 484 yards and one more TD out of the backfield.
Mario Bates (2554)—Mario Bates played the first few seasons of his career with the Saints, from 1994 to 1997, and still ranks eighth in franchise history with 2554 rushing yards. Bates’ best season was in 1995, when he rushed for career highs in yards (951) and touchdowns (7), with 18 catches for another 114 yards as well.
Wayne Wilson (2462)—Wayne Wilson played most of his career in New Orleans, and mostly as a backup running back, from 1979 to 1986. Wilson ranks ninth in team history with 2462 rushing yards, and his best season for the Saints was in 1983, when he started 8 games. That year, Wilson rushed for career highs in yards (787) and rushing scores (9), adding 20 catches for another 178 yards and 2 receiving touchdowns.
Archie Manning (2058)—Quarterback Archie Manning played most of his career in New Orleans, for some pretty bad teams, winning only 35 games during his tenure there from 1971 to 1982. Manning ranks tenth in Saints’ history with 2058 rushing yards, though he’s known mostly as an excellent quarterback who also spawned two of today’s great QBs in Peyton and Eli. Manning had a career high 351 rushing yards with 2 rushing touchdowns in 1972, and also passed for 2781 yards that season.