WALTER PAYTON

WALTER PAYTON

Class of 1993
Running Back >>> 5-10, 200
(Jackson State)
1975-1987 Chicago Bears

Walter Jerry Payton . . .First-round pick, 1975 draft. . . Quickly established himself as super star. . .Retired as all-time leader in rushing, combined net yards. . . Career stats: 16,726 yards, 110 TDs rushing; 492 receptions for 4,538 yards; 21,803 combined net yards, 125 touchdowns. . .All-Pro seven times. . .Played in nine Pro Bowls. . . Held single-game rushing record of 275 yards. . . Had 77 games over 100 yards rushing. . .Born July 25, 1954, in Columbia, Mississippi. . . Died November 1, 1999, at age of 45.

Walter Payton, the Chicago Bears' first-round choice and the fourth player selected in the 1975 National Football League Draft, developed into a superstar of unusual dimensions during his 13-season NFL tenure from 1975 to 1987, all of which he spent with the Chicago Bears.

The 5-10, 200-pound running back who rushed for 3,563 yards in four seasons at Jackson State went on to dominate the rushing section of the NFL record book during and long after his career ended.

The records he held at the time of his retirement included 16,726 total yards, 10 seasons with 1,000 or more yards rushing, 275 yards rushing in one game against Minnesota (1977), 77 games with more than 100 yards rushing, and 110 rushing touchdowns. Payton had 4,368 combined net attempts and accounted for 21,803 combined net yards. He also scored an impressive 750 points on 125 touchdowns.

Payton won the NFC rushing title five straight years from 1976 to 1980. He also led the NFC with 96 points in 1977 and won the NFL kickoff return championship in his rookie 1975 campaign. He was named both All-Pro and All-NFC seven times and played in nine Pro Bowl games. Payton was selected as the NFL's Most Valuable Player in 1977 and 1985, the NFL Offensive Player of the Year in 1977 and 1985 and the NFC Most Valuable Player in 1977.

An amazing runner, Walter rushed for more than 1,000 yards 10 of his 13 seasons. His best season came in 1977, when he ran for 1,852 yards, third best in history at that time. Payton's 492 career pass receptions for 4,538 yards and 15 touchdowns contributed to his exceptional combined net yard totals.

Extremely durable, Payton missed one game in his rookie campaign and then played in 186 consecutive games.

Year

Team

G
No.
Yds.
Avg.
TD
No.
Yds.
Avg.
TD
1975 Chicago
13
196
679
3.5
7
33
213
6.5
0
1976 Chicago
14
311
1390
4.5
13
15
149
9.9
0
1977 Chicago
14
339
1852
5.5
14
27
269
10.0
2
1978 Chicago
16
333
1395
4.2
11
50
480
9.6
0
1979 Chicago
16
369
1610
4.4
14
31
313
10.1
2
1980 Chicago
16
317
1460
4.6
6
46
367
8.0
1
1981 Chicago
16
339
1222
3.6
6
41
379
9.2
2
1982 Chicago
9
148
596
4.0
1
32
311
9.7
0
1983 Chicago
16
314
1421
4.5
6
53
607
11.5
2
1984 Chicago
16
381
1684
4.4
11
45
368
8.2
0
1985 Chicago
16
324
1551
4.8
9
49
483
9.9
2
1986 Chicago
16
321
1333
4.2
8
37
382
10.3
3
1987 Chicago
12
146
533
3.7
4
33
217
6.6
1
Career Total
190
3838
16,726
4.4
110
492
4538
9.2
15
Additional Career Statistics: Passing: 34-11-331, 8 TD, 6 Int; Kickoff Returns: 17-539

Championship Games

1984 NFC – San Francisco 49ers 23, Chicago Bears 0
Payton started at tailback. He had 22 rushes for 92 yards and three receptions for 11 yards.

1985 NFC – Chicago Bears 24, Los Angeles Rams 0
Payton started at running back. He had 18 rushes for 32 yards, seven receptions for 48 yards and one fumble.

Super Bowls

Super Bowl XX – Chicago Bears 46, New England Patriots 10
Payton started at running back. He had 22 rushes for 61 yards and one fumble.

All-NFL: 1976 (AP, PFWA, PW), 1977 (AP, PFWA, NEA, PW), 1978 (PFWA, NEA, PW), 1979 (NEA, PW), 1980 (AP, PFWA, NEA, SN, PW), 1984 (AP, PFWA, NEA, SN, PW), 1985 (AP, PFWA, NEA, SN)

All-NFL Second Team: 1976 (NEA), 1978 (AP), 1979 (AP), 1983 (NEA), 1986 (AP, NEA)

All NFC: 1976 (AP, UPI, SN, PW). 1977 (UPI, SN, PW). 1978 (UPI, SN, PW). 1979 (UPI, SN, PW). 1980 (UPI, PW). 1984 (UPI, PW). 1985 (UPI)

All NFC Second Team: 1983 (UPI). 1986 (UPI)

(9) – 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987

(at time of his retirement following 1987 season)

• [1st] Most Rushing Attempts, Career – 3,838
• [1st] Most Yards Rushing, Career – 16,726
• [1st] Most Seasons, 1,000 or More Yards Rushing – 10
• [1st] Most Yards Rushing, Game – 275 (vs. Minnesota, Nov. 20, 1977)
• [1st] Most Games 100 or More Yards Rushing, Career – 77
• [1st] Most Rushing Touchdowns, Career – 110
• [1st] Most Combined Attempts, Career – 4,368
• [1st] Most Combined Net Yards, Career – 21,803
• [Tied for 1st] Most Consecutive Seasons Leading League, Rushing Attempts – 4 (1976-79)
• [Tied for 1st] Most Consecutive Seasons, 1,000 or More Yards Rushing – 6 (1976-1981)
• [2nd] Most Touchdowns, Career – 125
• [2nd] Most Consecutive Games 100 or More Yards Rushing – 9 (1985)
• [Tied for 2nd] Most Seasons Leading League, Rushing Attempts – 4 (1976-79)
• [Tied for 3rd] Most Consecutive Seasons, 1,000 or More Yards Rushing – 3 (1983-86)
• [Tied for 3rd] Most Games 200 or More Yards Rushing, Season – 2 (1977)
• [Tied for 3rd] Most Games 100 or More Yards Rushing, Season – 10 (1977, 1985)

Pro Bowl Records

• [1st] Most Rushing Attempts, Career – 81
• [1st] Most Yards Rushing, Career – 368
• [1st] Most Receptions, Career – 18
• [2nd] Highest Average Rushing Gain, Game – 6.91 (1985)
• [Tied for 2nd] Most Rushing Touchdown, Career – 2
• [3rd] Most Yards Rushing, Game – 77 (1978)
• [Tied for 3rd] Most Fumbles, Career – 3

Chicago Bears records held by Payton
(Records through the 1987 season, Payton's final season with Chicago)

• [1st] Most Games – 190
• [1st] Most Consecutive Games – 186
• [1st] Most Points Scored, Career – 750
• [1st] Most Touchdowns, Career – 125
• [1st] Most Rushing Attempts, Career – 3,838
• [1st] Most Rushing Attempts, Season – 381 (1984)
• [1st] Most Rushing Attempts, Game – 40 (vs. Minnesota, Nov. 20, 1977)
• [1st] Most Yards Rushing, Career – 16,726
• [1st] Most Seasons, 1,000 or More Yards Rushing – 10
• [1st] Most Yards Rushing, Season – 1,852 (1977)
• [1st] Most Yards Rushing, Game – 275 (vs. Minnesota, Nov. 20, 1977)
• [1st] Most Games 100 or More Yards Rushing, Career – 77
• [1st] Most Consecutive Games 100 or More Yards Rushing – 9 (1985)
• [1st] Most Consecutive Seasons, 1,000 or More Yards Rushing – 6 (1976-1981)
• [1st] Most Games 200 or More Yards Rushing, Season – 2 (1977)
• [1st] Most Games 200 or More Yards Rushing, Career – 2
• [1st] Most Rushing Touchdowns, Career – 110
• [1st] Most Combined Attempts, Career – 4,368
• [1st] Most Combined Attempts, Season – 426 (1984)
• [1st] Most Combined Attempts, Game – 41 (vs. Minnesota, Nov. 20, 1977; at Buffalo, Oct. 7, 1979)
• [1st] Most Combined Net Yards, Career – 21,803
• [Tied for 1st] Most Rushing Touchdowns, Season – 14 (1977, 1979)
• [Tied for 1st] Most Consecutive Games with a Rushing Touchdowns – 7 (1976)
• [1st] Most Pass Receptions, Career – 492
• [2nd] Most Touchdowns, Season – 16 (1977, 1979)
• [2nd] Most Rushing Attempts, Season – 369 (1979)
• [2nd] Most Rushing Attempts, Game – 38 (at Dallas, Nov. 26, 1981)
• [2nd] Most Yards Rushing, Season – 1,684 (1984)
• [2nd] Most Consecutive Games 100 or More Yards Rushing – 6 (1984)
• [2nd] Most Rushing Touchdowns, Season – 13 (1976)
• [2nd] Most Consecutive Games with a Pass Reception – 45 (1984-87)
• [2nd] Most Combined Attempts, Season – 400 (1979)
• [2nd] Most Combined Attempts, Game – 40 (at Dallas, Nov. 26, 1981)
• [Tied for 2nd] Most Seasons – 13
• [Tied for 2nd] Most Consecutive Seasons – 13
• [Tied for 2nd] Most Consecutive Games with a Touchdown – 7 (1976)
• [Tied for 2nd] Most Yards Rushing, Game – 205 (at Green Bay, Oct. 30, 1977)
• [3rd] Most Rushing Attempts, Season – 339 (1977, 1981)
• [3rd] Most Rushing Attempts, Game – 36 (vs. Oakland, Nov. 7, 1976; vs. San Diego, Oct. 25, 1981)
• [3rd] Most Yards Rushing, Season – 1,610 (1979)
• [3rd] Most Consecutive Games 100 or More Yards Rushing – 5 (1977)
• [3rd] Most Receiving Yards, Career – 4,538
• [3rd] Most Combined Attempts, Season – 383 (1978)
• [3rd] Most Combined Attempts, Game – 39 (vs. San Diego, Oct. 25, 1981)
• [3rd] Most Combined Net Yards, Season – 2,216 (1977)
• [3rd] Most Combined Net Yards, Game – 300 (vs. New Orleans, Dec. 21, 1975)

NFL Statistical Championships
Touchdown Leader: 1977
Rushing Titles: 1977

NFC Statistical Championships
Scoring Titles: 1977
Touchdown Leader: 1977, 1979
Rushing Titles: 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980

Team Statistical Championships
Scoring Titles: 1976, 1977, 1979
Touchdown Leader: 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1981, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986
Rushing Titles: 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986
Reception Titles: 1978, 1980, 1981, 1983, 1984, 1985

• 1970s All-Decade Team
• 1980s All-Decade Team
• NFL’s 75th Anniversary Team
• All-Time NFL Team (selected in year 2000)
• 1976 NFC Player of the Year (SN)
• 1977 Most Valuable Player (PFWA, AP, NEA)
• 1977 NFC Player of the Year (UPI, SN)
• 1977 Offensive MVP (AP, PW)
• 1977 NFC Offensive Player of the Year (UPI)
• 1985 Most Valuable Player (NEA, MX)
• 1985 NFC Offensive Player of the Year (UPI)

Year Team W L T Division Finish
1975 Chicago Bears 4 10 0 (3rd)
1976 Chicago Bears 7 7 0 (2nd)
1977 Chicago Bears 9 5 0 (2nd)
1978 Chicago Bears 7 9 0 (4th)
1979 Chicago Bears 10 6 0 (2nd)
1980 Chicago Bears 7 9 0 (3rd)
1981 Chicago Bears 6 10 0 (5th)
1982 Chicago Bears 3 6 0 (12th*)
1983 Chicago Bears 8 8 0 (3rd)
1984 Chicago Bears 10 6 0 (1st)
1985 Chicago Bears 15 1 0 (1st)
1986 Chicago Bears 14 2 0 (1st)
1987 Chicago Bears 11 4 0 (1st)
*NFC regular season finish in strike-shortened season.

 

Full Name: Walter Jerry Payton

Birthdate: July 25, 1954

Birthplace: Columbia, MS

Died: November 1, 1999 at age of 45

High School: Columbia (MS)

Elected to Pro Football Hall of Fame: January 31, 1993

Enshrined into the Pro Football Hall of Fame: July 31, 1993

Presenter: Jarrett Payton, Walter's son

Other Members of Class of 1993: Dan Fouts, Larry Little, Chuck NollBill Walsh

Pro Career: 13 seasons, 190 games

Drafted: 1st round (4th player overall) in 1975 by Chicago Bears.

Uniform Number: #34

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