Week 5 Poll: Best Backfield

01/01/2005

Week Five poll: Greatest backfield

This week, profootballhof.com takes a look back at the greatest backfields in the history of the game. From the Cardinals' "Dream Backfield" of 1947 to the '90s Cowboys of Troy Aikman, Emmitt Smith, and the "Moose," Darryl Johnston, the NFL has seen its share of great backfields. Which one is your favorite?  

RETURN TO MAIN PAGE TO VOTE IN POLL NOW

49ers' "Million-Dollar Backfield"

The "Million-Dollar Backfield" -- consisting of Y.A. Tittle, John Henry Johnson, Hugh “The King” McElhenny (pictured), and Joe “The Jet” Perry -- supplied their fair share of excitement on the NFL gridiron during a three-year period. The "Million Dollar Backfield" is the only full-house backfield to have all four of its members enshrined in the Hall of Fame.

Cardinals' "Dream Backfield"

Charley Trippi (pictured), Paul Christman, Elmer Angsman, and Pat Harder made up the "Dream Backfield" for the 1947 NFL-champion Chicago Cardinals. In the '47 Championship against Philadelphia, Trippi scored on a 44-yard run and a 70-yard punt return, while Angsman torched the Steelers for two 70-yard touchdown runs. Cards' owner Charles Bidwill, who assembled the "Dream Backfield," died in April of '47 and never saw his team win the title.

Packers' Starr, Taylor, and Hornung

Green Bay became "Titletown" after the backfield of Bart Starr, Jim Taylor and Paul Hornung led the Packers to five world titles and victories in the first two Super Bowls. Starr led the League in passing in 1962, 1964 and 1966, and was named to the Pro Bowl four times. Taylor rushed for over 1,000 yards five straight seasons and is the 16th-ranked rusher in league history. Hornung won the NFL scoring title in three consecutive years (1959-61), setting the all-time league record of 176 points in 1960. 

Steelers' Bradshaw, Harris, and Bleier

The Steelers won six consecutive division titles and four Super Bowls behind the backfield of Terry Bradshaw, Franco Harris, and Rocky Bleier. Bradshaw, MVP of Super Bowls XIII and XIV, threw for 27,989 yards and 212 TDs, and he also ran for 2,257 yards and 32 TDs. Harris was elected to the Pro Bowl eight times and ran for 1,000 yards or more in nine seasons during his career. Bleier scored the go-ahead touchdown for the Steelers in Super Bowl XIII.

Cowboys' Aikman, Smith, and Johnston

The team of the '90s was led by the outstanding play of quarterback Troy Aikman, running back Emmitt Smith, and fullback Darryl "Moose" Johnston. In 1989, the Cowboys were 1-15 with rookie Aikman at the helm, but Aikman became the winningest quarterback of any decade in NFL history with 90 wins in the '90s, topping Joe Montana’s previous best of 86 wins in the 1980s. Smith holds the all-time record for touchdown runs with 138 and is the third-ranked rusher on the NFL’s all-time list. Smith has also won four NFL rushing titles behind Johnston's blocking. 

RETURN TO MAIN PAGE TO VOTE IN POLL NOW

GET RESULTS OF PREVIOUS POLLS

Note: Photos courtesy of the Associated Press.

Back to news