Knowing more NFL records than their friends is a goal of every football fan. After all, such knowledge decides most trivia game nights or fantasy football leagues’ outcomes.
Not sure if you know enough? That’s where we can help. We’ve gathered all the essential records you should know. So keep reading below to find out the most exciting and jaw-dropping records that will put you above the average fan.
Top 10 NFL Records in 2021 You Need to Know About
- There has been only one team with a “Perfect Season”.
- Calvin Johnson took the crown with 1,964 receiving yards in 2012.
- One of the most important NFL passing records is held by Drew Brees.
- In 2020, Justin Herbert broke multiple NFL rookie QB records.
- The total postseason wins record is held by the New England Patriots.
- Emmitt Smith holds NFL rushing records for most rush yards.
- Peyton Manning’s records include most yards and touchdowns in a season.
- Jerry Rice holds the most significant NFL receiving records.
- One of the most interesting NFL records is Tampa Bay’s 26 straight losses.
- Records show that George Blanda spent 26 years in the NFL.
Top NFL Records of All-Time
The Super Bowl era started after the merger of the NFL and AFL in 1970. Since then, the game has evolved and changed multiple times. Read below for some inspiring records set since the merger.
1.NFL all–time records show that there has been only one team with a “Perfect Season”.
The 1972 Miami Dolphins are the only team in NFL history to have a “perfect season,” aka finish undefeated. The team led by coach Don Shula finished with a 17–0 record, primarily due to the “No-Name Defence,” lesser-known players, and a 38-year-old QB.
2. Jerry Rice holds the most significant NFL receiving records.
Jerry Rice is one of the best receivers the game has ever seen. Over 20 seasons, he broke nearly all receiving records, such as most receptions (1,549), receiving yards (22,895), 1,000 yard receiving seasons (14), and receiving touchdowns (197).
3. Emmitt Smith holds NFL rushing records for most rush yards and seasons with over 1,000 rush yards.
Emmitt Smith holds the record for total rush yards, with 18,355 career rush yards. He also has the record for most seasons with over 1,000 rush yards — 11. He was part of the Cowboys’ dominance in the ’90s and spent 13 seasons with the team.
4. One of the most interesting NFL all–time win-to-loss records is Tampa Bay’s 26 straight losses.
Tampa Bay’s start to the NFL was something to forget. In 1976, the expansion team went 0–14 in their first season and lost the first 12 games of the 1977 season. However, the team eventually ended the streak by beating the New Orleans Saints in the Superdome.
5. Bill Belichick holds multiple NFL coaching records and is edging closer to Don Shula’s all-time wins record.
Don Shula’s total of 347 coaching wins puts him in first place. But Bill Belichick has already passed him and others in several all–time NFL coaching records:
- Most playoff wins by a coach: 31
- Most Super Bowl wins: 6
- Most conference titles: 9
- Most divisional titles: 17
- Most postseason games as a coach: 43
- Most consecutive ten-win seasons: 17
Essential NFL Single Season Records
While only one team had a “perfect season,” many players and teams had seasons to remember. Let’s see some of the most interesting ones below.
7. NFL season rushing records show that Eric Dickerson rushed for 2,105 yards in 1984, the most of any player.
While multiple players have reached 2,000-rush-yard seasons, nobody has been able to beat Dickerson’s 1984 record. Most recently, Derrick Henry came 79 yards short in 2020. However, with the addition of the 17th game in 2021, we might see this record broken.
8. According to NFL single–season receiving records, Calvin Johnson took the crown with 1,964 receiving yards in 2012.
Hall of Famer Calvin Johnson, aka “Megatron,” has beaten Jerry Rice’s record in 2012. That year, he had multiple 2,000+ yard games. No player has been able to beat Johnson’s record since, but we sure hope to see 2,000+ receiving yards in future seasons too.
9. NFL single–season sack records show Michael Strahan’s 22.5 sacks in 2001 puts him in the No.1 spot.
Michael Strahan’s 2001 season is one he is unlikely to ever forget. He broke the record for most sacks in a season, with 22.5, which earned him the Defensive Player of the Year award.
10. In 2020, Travis Kelce broke multiple NFL tight end records, including most receiving yards in a season.
Kansas City’s Travis Kelce finished the regular season with 1,416 yards, which is a record for the NFL. He also broke the record for most receptions (13) in a conference championship game and one of the three players with at least seven catches in ten consecutive games.
Top NFL QB Records
Let’s face it, the quarterback is the one we all watch. When kids want to play football, all want to be the QB. So let’s take a look at some extraordinary records for the position.
11. One of the most important NFL passing records, total passing yards, is held by Drew Brees.
Drew Brees is the leader in total passing yards, with 80,358. But that’s not all — other Drew Brees NFL records include:
- Most consecutive games with a touchdown: 54
- Brees has five 5,000 yard seasons. No other player has more than one.
- Brees has 7,142 completions, more than any other player.
12. Tom Brady holds another of the most significant NFL quarterback records, total touchdowns.
Tom Brady, referred to by many as the GOAT, just keeps breaking records. One of the most significant ones he holds is the total touchdowns. With 581, he passed Drew Brees, and considering Brees recently retired, Brady will increase that gap.
13. Peyton Manning’s NFL QB records include most yards and touchdowns in a season.
What a year 2013 was for Manning, from a statistical point of view. He broke the records for most passing yards in a year, with 5,477, and for passing touchdowns, with 55.
That brought him the MVP award, which he’s won more than any other player — five times.
14. In 2020, Justin Herbert broke multiple NFL rookie QB records.
In 2020 Justin Herbert broke multiple rookie records, and the Charger’s QB wasn’t even supposed to start. He missed on the total yards record by 39 but set numerous others:
- Most touchdowns: 36, out of which 31 were passing and 5 rushing
- Most completions: 396
- Most 300 yard games: 8
- Most games with at least two touchdown passes: 10
- Most games with at least three touchdown passes: 6
15. Cam Newton NFL records include the most rushing TDs by a QB of all time and in a single season.
In 2011, Newton set the season record during his rookie season, with 14 rushing TDs. Cam also holds the record for the most rushing TDs overall by a QB, with 70. Steve Young is far away in second place, with 43.
16. In 2013, Nick Foles set multiple NFL single–game records, including most TD passes and a perfect passing rating.
On November 3, 2013, in the win against the Raiders (49–20,) Nick Foles managed to tie the record for the most TD passes in a game, with seven. At the same time, he recorded a perfect passer rating of 158.3. He is currently the only QB that has managed such a feat.
NFL Playoff Records You Should Know About
Every team’s goal at the beginning of the season is to reach the playoffs. That’s where the real battles begin, and in the end, only the best team is proclaimed a Super Bowl Champion. Read below for some of the best playoff records.
17. NFL postseason records show that New England Patriots and Pittsburgh Steelers are tied for the most Super Bowl wins.
The Pittsburgh Steelers and New England Patriots have won six Super Bowl titles each. Pittsburgh’s last title came in 2009, while the Patriots’ last title was in 2019, NFL records show.
The Patriots won all of their titles within the last 20 years, while the Steelers won four between 1975 and 1980.
18. Tom Brady NFL records include most Super Bowl rings, appearances, MVPs, passing records, and most playoff wins.
We put Brady once again because, when it comes to playoffs, nobody comes near him. So, what NFL records does Tom Brady hold?
- Most Super Bowl rings: 7
- Most Super Bowl appearances: 10
- Most Super Bowl MVPs: 5
- Most passing yards in a Super Bowl: 505
- Most playoff wins: 34
19. One of the most embarrassing NFL playoff records by a team is the Cleveland Browns’ 18-year playoff drought.
Cleveland Browns’ playoff drought of 18 years between 2002 and 2020 is the largest in NFL history. The team finally qualified in 2020, passing the torch to the New York Jets, who haven’t made the playoffs in ten years.
20. One of the most impressive NFL all–time playoff records, total postseason wins, is held by the New England Patriots.
The New England Patriots lead the way in playoff wins with 37. As mentioned earlier, they’ve won six Super Bowls, and Tom Brady has broken multiple records with the team.
21. The Buffalo Bills hold a few postseason NFL records, including consecutive Super Bowl appearances.
Between 1991 and1994, the Buffalo Bills made it to the Super Bowl four consecutive years, an NFL record. But, unfortunately, they lost all four finals, which itself is a record.
They also hold the record for the biggest playoff comeback (32 points) set in 1992 against the Houston Oilers.
Notable Pre-Merger NFL Records
While most records are past-merger, there are records before that era that still hold today. Keep reading to find out the most impressive records achieved before 1970.
21. NFL single–game passing records show that Norm Van Brocklin holds the record for most pass yards in a game.
(Pro Football HOF)
On September 28, 1951, in the game between the L.A. Rams and N.Y. Yanks, L.A. quarterback Norm Van Brocklin threw five touchdowns and ended the game with 554 yards, the most in the NFL. He completed 27 out of 41 attempted passes.
22. When it comes to the longest career of an NFL player, records show that George Blanda spent 26 years in the NFL.
George Blanda’s career stretched into four decades (1949–1975) for a total of 26 years. He played as a quarterback and a kicker. He won the American Football League MVP in 1961 and, at the age of 43, won the NFL MVP in 1970.
23. One of the most impressive NFL records is Otto Graham’s ten consecutive championship games.
Otto Graham played QB for the Cleveland Browns in the All-American Football Conference (1946–49) and the NFL (1950–55).
The team won 105 games in ten years, lost 17, and tied 5 in the regular season. They went to ten straight championship games, winning seven.
24. Paul Krause’s 81 interceptions are among the NFL interceptions records he broke in his 16-year career.
(Pro Football HOF)
Paul Krause’s 16-year career saw him break multiple records at the time and go to four Super Bowls with the Minnesota Vikings (they lost all four).
He managed 12 interceptions in his rookie season and 81 overall, which is the current NFL record. No active player is close to that.
25. The legendary Vince Lombardi holds one of the most unbelievable NFL head coach records — only one loss in playoff games.
(Pro Football HOF)
Vince Lombardi is a symbol for the NFL, and the Super Bowl trophy carries his name. The legendary coach changed the game with his winning mentality and was the ultimate motivator. Today there are many books written about his philosophy.
He took the Packers from a 1-10-1 season to five-time NFL champions, including the first two Super Bowls. He has only one postseason loss and an overall playoff record of 9-1.
What NFL quarterback holds the most records?
When it comes to QB records, Tom Brady and Drew Brees come to mind. Both hold notable records and are considered one of the best. But who holds more records, Brees or Brady?
Take a look at some records by both and decide for yourself:
(USA Today)(CBS Sports)
Who has the most wins in the NFL?
The Green Bay Packers hold the record for most wins in the NFL. Combined with the regular season and playoffs, the Packers stand at 805 wins. In addition, the team has reached the playoffs 34 times, the most of any team.
What are some notable NFL combine records?
The NFL combine is the chance for NCAA athletes to showcase their physical abilities to the NFL teams potentially interested in drafting them. Let’s take a look at a few notable records:
- Bench press: Justin Ernest benched 225 lb 51 times in 1999
- 40-yard dash: John Ross completed the dash in 4.22 seconds in 2017
- Vertical Jump: Gerard Sensabaugh achieved a vertical jump of 46 inches to the nose in 2005
- 20-yard shuttle run: Jason Allen completed a 3.81-second run in 2006
Who has the most NFL kicking records?
Adam Vinatieri holds multiple kicking records. He is the leader in most points scored (2,673), most field goals made (599), and most field goals attempted (715).
(Pro Football Reference)
What teams hold the NFL all–time records for a win and loss percentage?
At the start of the 2019 season, the Dallas Cowboys, the world’s highest-valued sports team, had the highest winning percentage in the NFL regular season with 57.3%, while the Tampa Bay Buccaneers hold on to the last spot with a 38.5% winning percentage.
The NFL is a spectacular league, which is why it draws millions of fans from all around the world. In fact, the Super Bowl was the most-watched sporting event in the US in 2020. Each year, players and teams try to break the NFL records, but only a few succeed.
Teams such as the New England Patriots and QB Tom Brady have dominated the last 20 years of the game and broken multiple records. We can’t wait to see how many more will go down in the future. As the saying goes, “records are meant to be broken.”