Bears Hall of Famers Walter Payton and Gale Sayers are among 12 running backs that have been selected to the NFL 100 All-Time Team.
In celebration of the league’s 100th season, a roster of the 100 greatest players and 10 best coaches has been compiled. Over six consecutive Friday nights at 7 p.m. (CT), host Rich Eisen will be joined by Patriots coach Bill Belichick and analyst Cris Collinsworth to introduce the All-Time Team on NFL Network.
The 12 running backs on the team were unveiled on this week’s show.
Payton spent his entire 13-year NFL career with the Bears, missing only one game and retiring following the 1987 season as the league’s all-time leading rusher with 16,726 yards. Payton was voted to nine Pro Bowls, set 16 NFL records and 27 Bears marks and had his No. 34 retired. He also threw eight touchdown passes and led the NFL in kickoff returns as a rookie in 1975 with a 31.7-yard average. Payton was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1993.
Sayers was an electrifying and elusive running back who was a threat to go the distance every time he touched the ball. “The Kansas Comet” set seven NFL records and 23 team records during an injury-shortened seven-year career with the Bears. In 1977, at the age of 34, Sayers became the youngest man ever inducted into the Hall of Fame. His effective playing time is also the shortest of any Hall of Famer. Sayers had his No. 40 retired by the Bears in 1994.
Following each premiere of the NFL 100 All-Time Team will be the NFL 100 All-Time Team Reaction Show, a one-hour live recap hosted by Chris Rose where the selections from each episode will be debated and discussed.
The process to select and celebrate the historic team began in early 2018 with the appointment of a 26-person blue-ribbon voting panel made up of coaches, team and front office executives, former players and members of the media with a deep appreciation for the history of the league, its teams and players, as well as a commitment to research.