Top 10 unbreakable records in the NFL

October 13, 2015

Over the years the NFL fans have seen some sensational players, exceptional coaches, outstanding teams and some amazing records. Emmitt Smith’s record for 4,409 carries for 18,355 yards or Marvin Harrison’s record of taking 143 Catches in 2002 are astounding figures and the likes of which we might never see again.

We have come up with our list of the Top 10 Unbreakable NFL record and it is some list with some unbelievable achievements.


1.Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 26 Consecutive Losses


In 1976, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers joined the NFL as AFC West members and appointed John McKay as their head coach. The project was supposed to be a promising one, with McKay highlighting the importance of patience, experienced players and intelligent draft picks. But with different rules back then, the Buccaneers could only manage to get old veteran players or those that had not been offered contracts by their original teams. This team of misfits was obviously going to struggle to win matches but nobody predicted what was about to happen.


The Bucs failed to win a match the entire season and that sequence of poor results continued into the second campaign for a 26 consecutive loss streak. It ended when they finally beat the New Orleans Saints in the thirteenth week of their second season. The team could not manage to throw a touchdown pass for their first five games and ended the season with at least 17 players injured. They were officially considered the worst team in NFL history with a 0-14 record, until the Detroit Lions broke that record during the 2008 season with a 0-16 record. The Buccaneers however kept their losing streak going the next season as well, earning themselves a place in the record books for all the wrong reasons.


2.Vince Lombardi: 90% Postseason Winning Percentage


Vince Lombardi once said “winning is a habit.” Nobody knew more about wining than Lombardi himself, a true legend of football. One of the most successful coaches in NFL history, Lombardi was the coach of the Green Bay Packers from 1959 to 1967. Under him, the Packers won five National Football League championships in seven years, including three consecutive titles as well as winning the first two Super Bowls. His achievements got him the respect and admiration of his peers who honored his memory by renaming the NFL Super Bowl trophy ‘the Vince Lombardi Trophy’ in 1970.


Vince Lombardi achieved something that no one has been able to match to this day. Don Shula has the record for most wins by a coach with 328, followed by George Halas and Tom Landry but neither could match Lombardi’s 90% post season winning percentage. He won 96 regular season games in his ten years in charge with a 72.8% winning rate, including his time with the Washington Redskins who he led to their first winning season in thirteen years.

He also managed to record an 84.0% winning percentage in pre season games, but it was his 90% winning rate in the postseason that was a truly remarkable achievement. He only lost one postseason game out of the ten that his teams played and won five championships along the way. The match that he did lose was to the Philadelphia Eagles by only four points with the final score being 17-13. To this day, no other coach has even come close to breaking Lombardi’s record and it seems like no one ever will.


3.Brett Favre: 297 Consecutive Games played by a quarterback


It is hard to find a football fan who hasn’t heard the name Brett Favre. He started his career as a quarterback for the Atlanta Falcons in 1991, before joining the Green Bay Packers the following year. He started his first game on September 20th, 1992 and on that day a football star was born.

Favre started every game for the Packers, the New York Jets and the Minnesota Vikings for the next 20 years and set a record for most consecutive starts with 297 or 321 including playoff games. He only managed to miss out on 8 games where he had to retire injured, otherwise Favre became a constant unwavering figure at the Green Bay Packers and his later teams.

238 quarterbacks started in the NFL during the same time and seventeen of them were his own backup at one point in their careers. The streak came to an end when a shoulder injury made it impossible for him to start a game against the New York Giants on December 13th, 2010. Favre retired in January 2011. He also holds more than ten other NFL records including most pass touchdowns (508), most pass yards (71,838), most pass completions (6,300), most pass attempts (10,169), most pass interceptions (336), most starts (298) and most wins (186).


4.Otto Graham: 10 Championship Game Appearances


Otto Graham was a quarterback who played for the Cleveland Browns in the All-America Football Conference and the NFL. He left the Navy to join the Browns and became an important part of their squad, perhaps the most important, as he led them to a record 10 championship games and helped them win seven of them. He is considered one of the most influential players in the game’s history due to his personal achievements and his personal drive that was behind the Brown’s meteoric rise to the top of football.

Between 1946 and 1955, the Brown’s were one of the best teams in the league and Graham was their leader on and off the pitch. The Browns managed to post 114 wins with 20 losses and four ties. That stretch of success also included a 9-3 record in the playoffs. Graham also has the record for career average yards gained per pass attempt with nine. He also holds the record for the highest career winning percentage for an NFL starting quarterback at 81.4%. Graham’s ten championship games appearances record is still to be matched.


5.Don Hutson: 8 Touchdown Titles


Don Hutson joined the Green Bay Packers in 1935 and retired eleven seasons later in 1945. During that time he managed to become arguably the best wide receiver the game has ever seen. He is credited by many people for revolutionizing the role of the receiver. For Packers fans he is remembered as the man who was instrumental in the franchise winning three NFL championships in 1936, 1939 and 1944. When he retired he had a claim over 18 different NFL records and he was inducted in to the Football Hall of Fame in 1963.


Of his numerous records, arguably Don’s greatest achievement was the eight seasons he led the division in touchdowns scored. For eight years, Don led the number of touchdowns in the league, an astonishing achievement considering the fact he was a receiver and not a running back. This record still stands as no other player has enjoyed the same kind of sustained success that Don enjoyed during his playing days.


6.Sid Luckman: Best season for a quarterback


The T-Formation is the cornerstone of modern day football with most teams employing the formation or its numerous variations. However in the 1940s, the formation did not exist. It was George Halas, the owner and coach of the Chicago Bears, who came up with it in 1939. To make it work, he needed a quarterback who could do his new radical formation justice and in Sid Luckman, he found the best man for the job.

Luckman became the first quarterback to excel in the T-Formation. He used it to devastating effect an example of which was the 1940 NFL championship game between the Bears and the Washington Redskins. The Browns trounced the Redskins 73-0. The formation was an instant hit and more teams started to try it out. They could not use it to great effect because they did not have a player of Luckman’s caliber in their ranks.


Luckman holds the record for the best season by a quarterback and his statistics show how great a player he really was. He completed 110 passes out of a possible 202 for 2194 yards, including 28 touchdowns against only 12 interceptions. He had a record 13.9% touchdown rate with 10.9 yards per pass attempt with a pass rating of 107.5.  He is tied for the most passing touchdowns record in one game, with seven, while throwing for 443 yards in the same game. It was the first time in NFL history that someone had crossed the 400 yards mark in one game. Due to his influence on the game and his amazing performances, the Bears won four NFL championships during his time with the team.


7.Don Shula: 347 Coaching Wins


If we talk about the coaching achievements of Lombardi, then the name of Don Shula cannot be too far behind. Shula’s 33 years in professional football saw him reach heights that, no coach has since, and no coach will ever reach. Shula played as a cornerback for seven seasons before retiring as a player and becoming an assistant coach at the University of Virginia in 1958.

He got his first professional coaching job as the defensive backfield coach for the Detroit Lions before becoming the Baltimore Colts Head Coach in 1963. After a mixed time with the Colts, he left to join the Miami Dolphins in 1970. It was with the Dolphins that his career really took off. With the Dolphins, Shula won two Super Bowls (VII, VIII) and the NFL Championship in 1968. He also won the AFC Championship five times, in 1971, 1972, 1973, 1982 and 1984. Shula picked up fourteen division titles too with the Colts and the Dolphins.


Due to his tactical knowledge and his balance of team players, Shula set a number of coaching records throughout his career. He only registered two losing seasons in his entire 36 year career and won 347 games, a record that is yet to be matched. George Halas is second with 318 and Tom Landry is third with 250 wins. He also holds the record for most years and most consecutive years as a head coach with 33 years at the top level. He coached for 526 games in total, which is another record that will take some beating.

It was calculated that for a coach to beat Shula’s record for most matches won, he would have to win at least ten games for 35 seasons. It is pretty safe to say Shula’s record will remain intact, forever.


8.Jerry Rice: 1,549 Catches, 22,895 Yards, 197 Touchdowns


The only person who could give Don Hutson and his numerous NFL records a run for their money would be Jerry Rice. Actually Jerry Rice just might win. Considered by many as the best wide receiver the game has seen and perhaps the best football player of all time, Jerry Rice shattered records left, right and center. He still holds almost every NFL record for a wide receiver.


Jerry Rice started his career with the San Francisco 49ers before going on to play for the Oakland Raiders and the Seattle Seahawks. With the 49ers, Rice won three Super Bowls, two NFC championships and was named in the NFL All-Pro team 12 times in his 20 NFL seasons. He has more than 20 NFL records to his name including the fastest player to gain 23,000 yards from scrimmage, most career all purpose touchdowns with 208 (197 receptions, 10 rushing, 1 fumble), most career games played by a position player with 303 games, most career Yards from Scrimmage with 23,540 yards (22,895 receiving, 645 rushing) etc. His most prolific records are however considered to be his career receptions, career receiving yards and career touchdown receptions.

Rice made 1549 receptions with 22,895 yards received and 197 touchdowns receptions in his career. This was 447 catches, 6,961 yards and 44 touchdowns more than any other player in the NFL at the time. It was calculated that if a receiver were to catch a 100 passes for 1,500 yards and thirteen touchdowns for fifteen consecutive seasons, he would still not be close to breaking Rice’s record. That is some record.


9.George Blanda: 26 professional seasons


George Blanda was a professional football player who played as a quarterback and kicker for the Chicago Bears in the NFL, the Houston Oilers and the Oakland Raiders in the American Football League (AFL).  A very good player, he was never in the same mould as players like Sid Luckman and Don talent wise but George Blanda had his share of records too.

He is one of two people to play in four different decades and holds the record for being the oldest professional footballer when he played a game aged 48 years and 109 days. He was the first player to score over 2000 career points and holds the record of scoring a point every season for 26 seasons. His biggest record was however that to this day, he has played the most number of professional seasons as a football player with 26. The run began in 1949 and ended in 1975. He also has the record for the most interceptions thrown in a single season (1962) with 42 interceptions.


10.Ernie Nevers: Most Points Scored by One Player in a Game


Born in 1902, Ernie Nevers had the distinction of playing professional football as well as professional baseball. He played as a fullback for the Duluth Eskimos and later the Chicago Cardinals. He was a complete sportsman by heart who dedicated his life to the development of sports. It was however with the Cardinals that Nevers established an NFL record that, due to the evolution of the game since his time, will never be broken.

Nevers was the player and coach for the Cardinals match against their local rivals the Chicago Bears in 1929. History was made when Nevers scored six touchdowns and kicked four extra points to get forty points in one game. Due to the new football philosophy of focusing more on the team game than individuals, this feat may never be repeated as only Clinton Portis came close to matching it in 2003 with five touchdowns. This is a record that should keep Nevers name in the record for years to come and maybe possibly forever.


  • Jon says:

    Peyton M. and Nick Foles were both responsible for 42 points in the ’13 season.

    • Shawn says:

      They were only responsible for 6 points per touchdown.. the extra point is not theirs.

      • Anthony P says:

        Actually, they didn’t score any points in those games. the person who runs the ball across the endzone is awarded the points, not the QB who threw it. Passing TDs count as points credited to the receiver, not the QB.

        • koal carroll says:

          you have a good point but the ball started with the center

  • Studunn33 says:

    How is best season for a QB a record? Isn’t that a debatable opinion and not a record?
    Also Jon, I’m guessing QBs do not count because they are not scoring the touchdowns alone.

  • Johnny says:

    Quarterbacks don’t score points, the players that they throw to do. Unless the quarterback runs the ball into the end zone, of course.

  • Bob says:

    How about consecutive PATs made? Stephen Gostkowski holds the record (around 440+), and continues to add to it. With the new longer extra points, there’s no way anyone ever makes that many in a row again.

    • Gilz says:

      How bout now?

  • Mike Singer says:

    #6. Best QB season by what objective measurables? Rating? QBR? Offensive formation, stats for a single game (400+ yds, 7TDs), and a 73-0 blowout in a Championship are NO doubt impressive. However, compared to the 9 other records, this one does not belong because the same argument could be made for any Championship QB with great stats. It needs to be a measurable statistic.

  • dad says:

    If you consider the superbowl there are records that can never be broken, such as firsts. 1. First black quarterback to win a superbowl. 2. First rookie to rush for over 200 yards, there may be more but these two come to mind because there will never be another first in these categories.

    • CCC132 says:

      You are talking about “Firsts” not records.
      It is a historical fact that in 1988, Doug Williams was the first black quarterback to win a super bowl, but it’s not a record.
      Being the first to do something is simply that.. being the first. And obviously no one can ever take away a “being the first” at something.

      As far as rookie rushing RECORDS, Adrian Peterson sits atop that list at 296 in a single game as a rookie.

      • Ron says:

        Yes that was in the regular season that Adrian Peterson ran for that.
        Timmy Smith did that in Super Bowl 22
        22 carries 204 yards 2 touchdowns to beat Marcus Allen’s record that was set against the Redskins how ironic
        And like I said Super Bowl and regular season are two difference Cochise

    • CCC132 says:

      You are talking about being the first to do something. That is not a record. It is simply a first.

  • Ed Raab says:

    Big Ben won his first 16 starts, as a rookie, in the NFL. Why is this record not listed anywhere.

    • Carl says:

      Ed, No he did not! He came in for injured players and went 13-0 during the regular season and won 1 in the play-offs before losing to the Patriots by throwing 3 costly interceptions to Rodney Harrison.the Steelers lost to the New England Patriots, by a score of 41–27.

      He did win the 1st 2 games of the following season to have the most consecutive regular season wins by a rookie with 15 but he did not win his 1st 16 games.

      • chris fields says:

        yes he did he beat his first 16 opponets

  • Mary Snow says:

    How many NFL games have been won by the kicker?

  • Dagan Whetstine says:

    How about Derrick Thomas with 7 sacks in one game! Some have come close but no elusive 7th sack

  • Ken James says:

    Tony Dorsett’s 99 yard run from scrimmage in 1983 can be tied but not broken. I haven’t watched the game in over 25 years but did see that play.

    • Bentley Stanton says:

      The Cowboys also had only 10 players on the field.

    • Bentley Stanton says:

      The Cowboys also had only ten men on the field for that play.

  • sean clancy says:

    Which NFL player holds the record for the highest percentage of wins versus games started in their career?

    • Thomas Leonard says:

      Otto Hraham, its listed in this article

  • Chris says:

    Darrell Green, an interception in 19 consecutive seasons. That’s going to be a tough one to break

  • Mitchel C says:

    About Ernie Nevers’ record, it is worth noting that he scored EVERY SINGLE point for his team in that 40-6 victory.

  • John Galt says:

    My buddy told me that infamous QB Colin Kaepernick owns the record for most losses by a QB in a single season with is 1-10 record in 2016.

    Kaepernick’s record is indeed horrific, but surely there must be another QB who lost more in a single season. Does anyone know?

    • Thomas Leonard says:

      Your buddy needs to check his facts, while posting a 1-10 record as a starting QB is bad, its not as bad as three time Super Bowl winner and NFL Hall of Famer Troy Aikman, who was a woeful 0-11 as a starter for Dallas in 1989. The Cowboys won only one game that year, ironically with Aikman on the bench and Steve Walsh starting at QB.

    • Thomas Leonard says:

      Plus Phillip Rivers lost 12 games as a starter just two years ago (along with 4 wins). Peyton Manning lost 13 games as a starting QB in 1998 (with 3 wins), Tim Couch lost 12 games as a starter for expansion Cleveland in 1999 (with 2 wins),

      Eli Manning lost 10 games in a season twice (along with 6 wins each season)

      Jon Kitna lost 13 games as a starter in 2006 for Detroit (with 3 wins).

      There are numerous other examples, those are just a few, Kappernick losing 10 games in a season is far from a record and his 1-10 won-lost wasnt as bad as Aikman’s 0-11 mark in 1989

    • Don Kerr says:

      Troy Aikmen 1-15 his first season

    • Jambo says:

      Just a throw in on this… Steve Spurrier lost 12 games as the starter and 2 more he played in for Tampa in 1976. Only a 14 game season back then so he lost every game he played in that year. So percentage wise he lost 100% of games started and played in.

  • Hut Howell says:

    What is the record for a team running the play from scrimmage vs. passing?

  • Keith Norris says:

    I watched and marveled at all the records Jerry Rice set. I watched him play as many games as I could. He really benefitted too by playing for two hall of fame Quarterbacks . But of course he had to catch all those balls and yards after the catch made him most dangerous!

  • l_tompkins says:

    I don’t agree. Look at

  • RUSS says:

    What about Paul Krause of the Vikings his interception record will never be touched.

  • Mike says:

    Comparing some of these pre-merger records to now is ridiculous. Who cares if Vince Lombardi won nine games out of only ten for a 90% win rate? Who cares that Otto Graham played in 10 championship games? It’s much easier to achieve a higher win percentage playing fewer games or having far less teams to compete against in the league.

    • Fucc_yo_team says:

      Exactly. Those ancient records are obsolete now.

  • Dick says:

    Most Superbowls won by the kicker, has to be the Patriots.

  • Karen says:

    1940 NFL Championship game between the Chicago Bears and the Washington Redskins. The Bears won 73-0 I would consider that an almost unbeatable record.

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