|Born:||September 2, 1960|
|Height:||6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)|
|Weight:||220 lb (100 kg)|
|High school:||Sealy (TX)|
|NFL Draft:||1983 / Round: 1 / Pick: 2|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Career NFL statistics|
|Player stats at NFL.com · PFR|
Eric Demetric Dickerson (born September 2, 1960) is an American former professional football player who was a running back in the National Football League (NFL) for 11 seasons. Dickerson played college football for the Mustangs of Southern Methodist University and was recognized as an All-American. He was selected in the first round of the 1983 NFL Draft and played professionally for the Los Angeles Rams, Indianapolis Colts, Los Angeles Raiders, and Atlanta Falcons of the NFL. During his NFL career, he rushed for over 13,000 yards. He holds the NFL's single-season rushing record with 2,105 yards, set in 1984. Dickerson was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1999. In 2019, he was named to the NFL 100th Anniversary All-Time Team. He wore prescription goggles throughout his career due to myopia.
Dickerson committed to Texas A&M before reconsidering and deciding amongst Oklahoma, Southern California and Southern Methodist University (SMU). His great-great aunt talked him into staying in the state of Texas to attend Southern Methodist University because she liked SMU coach Ron Meyer.Dickerson was the subject of recruiting controversy when he started driving a new Pontiac Trans-Am during his senior year of high school. According to "myth," Dickerson began driving a new Pontiac Trans-Am automobile about the same time he committed to A&M, and, when he signed with SMU, he suddenly was not driving the Trans-Am because it had been destroyed by a vengeful Aggie". Ron Meyer famously called the car, the "Trans A&M." At the time he said his grandmother from Mexico bought it for him. Dickerson still refuses to answer on whether or not he accepted anything to attend SMU, saying, "Even if I did take something, I still wouldn't tell."
Initially, Dickerson shared carries with Craig James and Charles Waggoner, all three blue-chip recruits in 1979. Waggoner was hurt returning a kickoff their freshman season, leaving Dickerson and James to lead SMU's running attack, called the Pony Express.Dickerson gained 4,450 yards on 790 carries to break Earl Campbell’s Southwest Conference record for yards and attempts. His 48 career touchdowns tied Doak Walker’s SMU total for career scoring. In his senior year, despite splitting time with James, Dickerson finished third in the Heisman Trophy voting, behind Herschel Walker and John Elway. He was also a first-team All-American in 1982 and a second-team All-American in 1981.
While he considered going to the Los Angeles Express in the United States Football League, Dickerson decided to go into the National Football League. He was selected second overall in the 1983 NFL Draft by the Los Angeles Rams. An immediate success, he established rookie records for most rushing attempts (390), most rushing yards gained (1,808) and most touchdowns rushing (18), including another two receiving touchdowns. His efforts earned him All-Pro, Pro Bowl, Player of the Year and Rookie of the Year honors.
In his second season, Dickerson continued his onslaught on the NFL record book becoming a member of the 2,000-yard club. Twelve times in 1984 he gained more than 100 yards rushing, breaking the record of 100-yard games in a season held by O. J. Simpson. His 2,105 total yards rushing beat Simpson's 1973 NFL season record of 2,003 yards (Dickerson having reached 2,007 yards after 15 games), but since the NFL expanded the regular season from 14 to 16 games in 1978, Dickerson had the benefit of playing in two additional games. No one has since rushed for more yards in a single NFL season. Dickerson's 5.6 yards per carry led the Rams to a playoff berth in 1984.
Although he rushed for 1,234 yards in 1985 while missing the first two games while in a contract dispute, he missed the Pro Bowl for the first time in his short NFL career. He did go on to rush for a playoff record 248 yards against the Dallas Cowboys in post-season play.
The 1985 season marked the beginning of ongoing contract disputes between Dickerson and the Rams. In 1987, after playing just three games for the Rams during the strike-shortened 1987 season, Dickerson was traded to the Indianapolis Colts in one of the NFL's biggest trades ever at that time. In a three-team deal, the Colts traded linebacker Cornelius Bennett, whom they drafted but were unable to sign to a contract, to the Buffalo Bills for their first-round pick in 1988, first- and second-round picks in 1989, and running back Greg Bell. The Colts in turn traded Bell and the three draft choices from Buffalo plus their own first- and second-round picks in 1988, their second-round pick in 1989, and running back Owen Gill to the Rams for Dickerson. With the picks the Rams took running back Gaston Green, wide receiver Aaron Cox, linebacker Fred Strickland, running back Cleveland Gary, linebacker Frank Stams, and defensive back Darryl Henley.The trade reunited Dickerson with Ron Meyer, who had left SMU after Dickerson's junior season to take the head coaching position in New England and who was hired by the Colts in 1986 following Rod Dowhower's firing.
Although he played in just nine games with the Colts that year, he still managed to gain 1,011 yards to finish the season with 1,288.Also, he spearheaded a late season Colts run that helped the team to their first winning season (and first playoff berth) in 10 years.
In 1988, Dickerson, with 1,659 yards rushing, became the first Colt to lead the league in rushing since Alan Ameche in 1955. This would mark the apogee of Dickerson's career with the Colts (although he would gain 1,311 yards rushing in 1989). Also, 1989 was the year that he passed the 10,000-yard mark, becoming the fastest player ever to do so (91 games), accomplishing the feat faster than greats like Jim Brown (98 games), Barry Sanders (103 games), Emmitt Smith (106 games), and LaDainian Tomlinson (106 games).By 1989, he had set a new NFL record with seven straight seasons of more than 1,000 yards rushing, and led the league for four of those seasons. With the retirement of Tony Dorsett at the end of 1988, he became the leader among active players in career rushing yards, a position he occupied until his own retirement in 1993.
However, injuries, further contract disputes, and suspensions clouded his final two seasons with the Colts. Dickerson, at 29, was the highest-paid running back in the NFL, receiving an annual reported salary of $1.4 million. Following prolonged contract disputes, the fed-up Colts placed him on the inactive list before the start of the 1990 season where he stayed for 7 weeks and lost more than $600,000 in salary.In his sixth game back from suspension, he rushed for 143 yards against the Bengals on 22 carries—this effort lifted him past Jim Brown to third place on the NFL career rushing list behind Walter Payton and Tony Dorsett. He was again suspended in November 1991, and amidst injuries and age, managed to run for only 536 yards that season. The Colts finished the year bottoming out with a 1–15 record.
On April 26, 1992, Dickerson was traded by the Colts to the Los Angeles Raiders for their fourth- and eighth-round picks in the 1992 draft. There were occasional flashes of greatness—107 yards against the Broncos, 103 against the Chargers, where he recorded his 63rd and 64th career 100-yard games—but those would be his last. Dickerson also scored on a 40-yard touchdown run, reminiscent of his prime, in front of a nationally televised Monday Night audience in a game against Kansas City. That year, he led the team in rushing attempts and yards. However, he suffered from splitting carries with Marcus Allen by having the latter finish the second half.
The following season, Dickerson was traded to the Atlanta Falcons on July 7, 1993, for a sixth-round draft pick. He played in a backup role, making his final national televised appearance during the Monday Night Football game on September 27, 1993, when the Falcons hosted the Pittsburgh Steelers in a losing effort. The Falcons traded Dickerson and third-year cornerback Bruce Pickens to the Green Bay Packersfor running back John Stephens on October 13, 1993.
The trade came a week after Dickerson said he had been told that the Falcons were waiving him because Coach Jerry Glanville wanted to use younger players. The next day, Falcons officials said that there had been a misunderstanding and that Dickerson had not been placed on waivers. Dickerson retired as the second leading rusher of all time after failing a physical with the Packers.
On August 29, 2017, Dickerson signed a one-day contract to officially retire as a member of the Los Angeles Rams.
|AP NFL Offensive Player of the Year|
|Led the league|
Dickerson became the seventh back to gain more than 10,000 yards and the fastest ever to do so, reaching the milestone in just 91 games. During his 11-year career, Dickerson gained 13,259 yards rushing, which was second all-time at the time of his retirement, and rushed for 90 touchdowns. He gained another 2,137 yards and 6 touchdowns on 281 pass receptions. A six-time Pro Bowl selection, Dickerson was All-Pro in 1983, 1984, 1986, 1987 and 1988. In 1999, his first year of eligibility, Eric Dickerson was selected to become a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Also in 1999, he was ranked number 38 on The Sporting News' list of the 100 Greatest Football Players. The following year, he provided on-field commentary during Monday Night Football broadcasts.
The Rams' number 29 has been retired in his honor.
Dickerson was inducted into the Indianapolis Colts Ring of Honor during the week 15 game against the Houston Texans on December 15, 2013 along with Marshall Faulk, who is also a former Colts running back.
In 1999, he was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
In 2019, he was one of twelve running backs selected to the NFL 100th Anniversary All-Time Team.
Dickerson was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 2020.
Along with Melissa Stark, Dickerson served as a sideline reporter on Monday Night Football broadcasts for ABC during the 2000 and 2001 NFL seasons.
During the 2007 football season and 2016 football season, Dickerson worked as a broadcaster for KCBS television in Los Angeles, providing commentary for NFL pregame and postgame shows.
He started a sports memorabilia company called Original Mini Jerseys with former Los Angeles Rams teammate LeRoy Irvin. The company received their NFL license in 2006 and sells authentic miniature replica jerseys. He also owns an internet-based sporting goods company, E Champs.
Dickerson made a cameo appearance in the television series Hawaii Five-0 in 2014.In August 2016, he began hosting a two-hour Monday afternoon program on Los Angeles sports-talk station KLAC.
In 2017, he competed in the reality television game show The New Celebrity Apprentice . He was the third contestant "terminated" by host Arnold Schwarzenegger.
In 2019, Dickerson played a role as LAFD Chief Brinkle in the TV Series S.W.A.T.
He is currently an NFL analyst for Fox Sports' FS1.
Marshall William Faulk is a former American football running back who played in the National Football League (NFL) for 13 seasons with the Indianapolis Colts and St. Louis Rams. He played college football for San Diego State University and was a two-time consensus All-American. He was selected by the Colts as the second overall pick in the 1994 NFL Draft, whom he was a member of for five seasons, before spending his last eight seasons with the Rams. Faulk was a member of the Greatest Show on Turf, a name given to the St. Louis Rams team that appeared in two Super Bowls and won Super Bowl XXXIV. In 2000, Faulk was named the Most Valuable Player of the NFL. Faulk is one of only three NFL players to reach at least 10,000 rushing yards and 5,000 receiving yards; he is the only one to amass 12,000 yards rushing and 6,000 yards receiving. Faulk was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2011 and the College Football Hall of Fame in 2017. He was an analyst for various programs on the NFL Network until December 2017.
Jerome Abram Bettis Sr. is a former American football running back who played in the National Football League (NFL) for 13 seasons, primarily with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Nicknamed "The Bus" for his large size and "bruising" running style, he was selected by the Los Angeles Rams in the first round of the 1993 NFL Draft as the tenth overall pick. Bettis was a member of the Rams for three seasons before being traded to the Steelers, where he spent the remainder of his career. A six-time Pro Bowler and two-time first-team All-Pro, he is regarded as one of the best power running backs of all time and ranks eighth on the list of NFL rushing yards leaders. He retired in 2006 after helping the Steelers win a Super Bowl title in Super Bowl XL over the Seattle Seahawks, the franchise's first in over two decades. Bettis was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2015.
Steven Rashad Jackson is an American former professional football player who was a running back in the National Football League (NFL). He played college football for the Oregon State Beavers and was drafted by the St. Louis Rams in the first round with the 24th overall selection in the 2004 NFL Draft. He also played for the Atlanta Falcons and New England Patriots.
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Thomas Roland Matte, is a former American football player who played quarterback in college and primarily running back in the National Football League (NFL) in the 1960s and 1970s and earned a Super Bowl Ring. He attended Shaw High School in East Cleveland and is an Eagle Scout. Matte was an All-American back at Ohio State University.
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William Lamar Lothridge was an American football Punter, Safety and Quarterback in the National Football League for the Dallas Cowboys, Los Angeles Rams, Atlanta Falcons and Miami Dolphins. He played college football at Georgia Tech.
Tom Moore is a former professional American football player. He was a running back in the National Football League for eight seasons, the first six with the Green Bay Packers. He went to the Pro Bowl after the 1962 season and later played for the Los Angeles Rams and Atlanta Falcons.
The 1987 Los Angeles Rams season was the franchise's strike shortened 50th season in the National Football League, their 40th overall, and their 42nd in the Greater Los Angeles Area. The season saw the Rams attempting to improve on their 10-6 record from 1986 and make the playoffs for the 5th straight season. However, the Rams struggled right out the gate. In their first 2 games against the Houston Oilers and Minnesota Vikings, the Rams had 4th quarter leads and blew them. They led 13-0 in the 4th quarter at Houston and lost 20-16, while they led 16-14 at home against Minnesota and lost 21-16. The next week, a strike occurred which wiped out all week 3 games. As a result, their game at home against the Cincinnati Bengals was canceled. One week later, the Rams were thumped by the Saints 37-10 to start the season 0-3, their first such start since 1982, which was, ironically, also a season that saw a strike take place. The Rams finally got in the win column the next week, beating the Pittsburgh Steelers at home, 31-21. However, the next week in Atlanta, the Rams lost another big lead, this time after leading 17-0 at halftime and 20-7 in the 4th quarter. This was followed by embarrassing losses to the Cleveland Browns (30-17), the arch-rival San Francisco 49ers (31-10), and the Saints again (31-14) to drop to 1-7, their worst start since 1965, when they started 1-9. However, the Rams then caught fire, beating the St. Louis Cardinals in St. Louis, 27-24, after trailing 24-14 in the 3rd quarter. The next week in Washington, the Rams outlasted the Washington Redskins on Monday Night Football 30-26, and it appeared as though the Rams were poised to get back in the playoff race. The win over Washington was followed by blowout wins over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (35-3), Detroit Lions (37-16), and Atlanta Falcons (33-0) and the Rams were looking to make an improbable in-season turnaround. However, the next week against the Dallas Cowboys, the Rams lost 29-21 to eliminate them from the playoffs. The season ended with the Rams getting pummeled by the 49ers on the road, 48-0. Ultimately, the Rams finished the strike-shortened season 6-9 and missed the playoffs for the first time since 1982.
The 1985 Los Angeles Rams season was the franchise's 48th season in the National Football League and their 40th in the Greater Los Angeles Area.
The 1984 Los Angeles Rams season was the franchise's 47th season in the National Football League, their 48th overall, and their 39th in the Greater Los Angeles Area. The Rams looked to improve on their 9–7 record from 1983 and make the playoffs for the second consecutive season and 10th in the last 12. They improved on their record by one game, going 10–6, good enough for second place in the NFC West behind the 15–1 San Francisco 49ers. In the playoffs, the Rams lost a low-scoring game to the New York Giants at home, 16–13. During this season, second-year running back Eric Dickerson set the NFL record for most rushing yards in a season, with 2,105 yards.
The 1983 Los Angeles Rams season was the team's 46th year with the National Football League and the 38th season in the city of Los Angeles. The franchise drafted a future Hall of Fame Running Back in Eric Dickerson. The season saw the team attempt to improve on its 2–7 record from 1982. The team started out 5–2 before splitting their next 4 games and then lost at home to Washington to sit at 7–5. They would split their last 4 games to finish 9–7 and make the playoffs for the first time since 1980 after a 2-year absence. In the playoffs, they defeated the Cowboys 24–17 in Dallas to advance to the Divisional Round. However, in the game, the Rams were annihilated 7–51 by the Redskins, who would move on to the Super Bowl, only to lose to the other Los Angeles NFL team, the Los Angeles Raiders, 38–9.
The 2,000-yard club is a group of eight National Football League (NFL) running backs who have rushed for 2,000 yards or more in a regular season. These eight rushing seasons rank as the highest single-season rushing totals in NFL history, and reaching the 2,000-yard mark is considered a significant achievement for running backs. No running back has yet achieved this feat twice. The first 2,000-yard season was recorded in 1973 by Buffalo Bills running back O. J. Simpson. Simpson is the only player ever to have surpassed 2,000 yards in a 14-game season, as all others occurred in 16-game seasons; he finished the season with 2,003 rushing yards, averaging six yards per carry and an NFL-record 143.1 rushing yards per game. Los Angeles Rams running back Eric Dickerson, who had broken the single-season rookie rushing record in 1983, recorded the second 2,000-yard season in 1984. Dickerson rushed for 2,105 yards, the current NFL rushing record, and averaged 131.6 rushing yards per game.
Todd Jerome Gurley II is an American football running back who is a free agent. He played college football at Georgia, where he earned All-SEC honors in 2012 and 2013. Gurley was drafted by the St. Louis Rams with the tenth overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft. Despite missing three games due to a torn ACL suffered during his final year at Georgia, Gurley rushed for 1,106 yards in his rookie season and was voted AP NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year. He was also named AP NFL Offensive Player of the Year following the 2017 season after scoring 19 offensive touchdowns.
Marlon Devon Mack is an American football running back for the Indianapolis Colts of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at South Florida and was drafted by the Colts in the fourth round of the 2017 NFL draft.
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