Fastest NFL Players of All Time – Who Makes The Top 10?

Fastest nfl players

11 minutes

Last Updated: May 25, 2024


The most successful, most popular professional sports league in the United States, the NFL (National Football League) has been around since 1920.

Back in the day, the NFL was known as the American Professional Football Association. In the very beginning, only ten teams competed from four different states.

Two years after the American Professional Football Association was founded it transformed into the league we know today.

Fast forward to 2022, only two original teams that competed back in the inaugural season, the Chicago Arizona Cardinals and the Chicago Bears are still competing.

The oldest NFL franchise, the Green Bay Packers was founded in 1919. The team joined the National Football League in 1921. In the NFL, thirty-two teams compete from the AFC (American Football Conference) and the NFC (National Football Conference.

Each NFL regular season lasts for eighteen weeks starting from September. Every competing team usually plays seventeen matches.

The most successful teams from the regular NFL season compete in the playoffs. Finally, the AFC and NFC teams that won the playoffs compete for the shiniest trophy in the Super Bowl that takes place in February each year.

Further, we take a look at the fastest NFL players you should definitely know about if you are a true NFL fan.

Our list of the fastest NFL players of all time includes Raheem Mostert, Christian McCaffery, Marquise Hollywood Brown, Bob Hayes, Bo Jackson, Darrell Green, Deion Sanders, Tyreek Hill, Chris Johnson, and Dri Archer.

1. Raheem Mostert

Raheem Mostert 40 time is 4.32 in the National Football League Season 2021 which makes this amazing San Francisco 49ers running back one of the fastest NFL players.

If you are wondering who is the fastest person in the NFL currently, it is Tyreek Hill who also appears on our list of fast football players later on.

Back to Raheem Mostert and his impressive career stats. Raheem Mostert was born in April of 1992. Before being regarded as one of the fastest players in NFL history, Raheem was a member of track and field and football teams at his high school.

In 2010, Raheem competed at the Central Florida All-Star Game. This is when his amazing talent was recognized by NFL scouts.

In 2011, Raheem enrolled at Purdue University after being offered scholarships from several different universities, including Rutgers University, University of Southern Mississippi, and Wake Forest University.

He played college football for three years. In 2015, he joined the Philadelphia Eagles during the NFL Draft. Even though he had an amazing record, he left the team.

Shortly after, he joined the Miami Dolphins. Before joining the San Francisco 49ers, Raheem Mostert played for the New York Jets, Chicago Bears, Cleveland Browns, and Baltimore Ravens.

2. Marquise Hollywood Brown

Second on our list of the fastest NFL players of all time we have Hollywood Brown. Hollywood Brown 40 time improved significantly since his first season in the NFL.

More specifically, Marquise Brown 40 time this season is 4.32 which is pretty impressive. Just like many other fast football players that appear on this list, Marquise Hollywood Brown is still active in the NFL.

He was born in June of 1997 in Florida. At the moment, he competed for the Baltimore Ravens as a wide receiver. He joined the team in 2019 after playing college football for several years.

One of the fastest NFL players of all time played in the same Pop Warner football league as Lamar Jackson. After graduating high school, he enrolled at Chaminade Madonna College Preparatory School.

In 2016, he competed for the Canyons before he joined the Oklahoma Sooners team. His professional career started in 2019 when he signed a contract with the Baltimore Ravens. In his debut game, he played against the Miami Dolphins.

He made history after becoming the very first NFL player to score two touchdowns of forty yards in his debut match. In his second match against the Arizona Cardinals, he had eight passes for eighty-six yards.

3. Christian McCaffery

Christian McCaffery 40 time is 4.49 seconds which makes this excellent running back one of the fastest players in NFL history. Christian McCaffery was born in June of 1996 and currently, he competed in the National Football League for the Carolina Panthers.

Like other players listed here, Christian McCaffery played college football before he was drafted to the NFL.

Christian McCaffery’s father Ed McCaffery also played in the NFL. After graduating high school in Colorado, he joined the Stanford college team just like his father.

In his debut game for the team, he had a fifty-two-yard touchdown against the UC Davis Aggies team. In 2017, he joined the Carolina Panthers after Leonard Fournette. In May that same year, he signed a four-year contract.

In his debut game for the Carolina Panthers, the team played against the favorite San Francisco 49ers. Christian McCaffery scored forty-seven rushing and thirty-eight receiving yards.

In his second game, he scored nine receptions for one hundred and one yards. During the 2018 season, Christian McCaffery scored fourteen receptions for one hundred and two receiving yards and this remains his career-high.

4. Bob Hayes

We cannot discuss the fastest NFL players without mentioning Bob Hayes. Boy Hayes set a record in the one hundred-meter dash a long time ago.

This legendary NFL player was born in December of 1942. Regarded as one of the fastest NFL players of all time, “Bullet Bob” as Bob Hayes was nicknamed remains an inspiration for many currently active NFL players.

After receiving his high school diploma, Bob Hayes received a scholarship from the Florida A&M University. Besides playing college football, he also excelled in many other sports activities, including track and field.

One of the most successful sprinters of all time had also a successful career in the NFL as a football wide receiver.

He joined the National Football League in 1964 after being drafted by the Dallas Cowboys. He was also drafted by the Denver Broncos. Bob Hayes’ first two seasons in the NFL made him a superstar.

During his fruitful career, Bob Hayes also played for the San Francisco 49ers in 1975 after he left the Dallas Cowboys after nine years.

One of the fastest players in NFL history was inducted into the Hall of Fame Pro Football in 2009. Sadly, Bob Hayes passed away in 2002 at the age of fifty-nine of kidney failure.

5. Bo Jackson

Bo Jackson is yet another excellent NFL player who deserves his spot on our list of the most successful fast football players. Bo’s best 40 time was 4.13 seconds. Bo Jackson was born in November of 1962. He spent most of his childhood in Alabama.

He was a running back at his school located in the small Alabamian city of MyCalla. In 1982, Bo Jackson was drafted by the New York Yankees of the MLB. However, he decided to enroll at Auburn University and play American football.

After joining Auburn University, he was coached by Booby Wallace. It was not long before Bo Jackson proved himself not only as an amazing athlete in football but baseball as well.

During his time in the Auburn Tigers team, he ran for over four thousand and three hundred yards.

When it comes to his professional sports career, he started playing for the Kansas City Royals. Later, he joined the California Angels and White Sox. When it comes to his NFL career, he started with the Los Angeles Raiders in 1987.

He remained on top of his game until 1991 when he suffered a serious hip injury that eventually ended his tremendous career. Bo Jackson is not only one of the fastest NFL players but also the only athlete to be considered an All-Star in football and baseball.

6. Darrell Green

Another former NFL player on our list of the fastest players in NFL history is great Darrell Green. Darrell Green was active on the field from 1983 until 2020.

Just a few professional athletes could run a forty-yard dash in 4.43 seconds and amazing Darrell Green did so numerous times in his career.

Darrell Green was born in February of 1960 in Houston, Texas. After turning pro, he joined the Washington Redskins. He remained loyal to the team until 2002 when he retired.

Like most other professional athletes, Darrell Green was active in track and field competitions during his high school years. In his junior year of college, Green made it to the junior football team of Texas A&I University.

After graduating from college, he decided to fully focus on his sports career. During the NFL Drafts 1983, he was selected by the Washington Redskins.

During his first season in the NFL, he started all games.  As mentioned at the beginning, his official 40 time record is 4.43 seconds but his teammates have reported many times that Green ran a forty-yard dash in around 4.09 seconds back in 1986 during training camp.

In 2016, Green started working at George Mason University in the athletics department.

7. Deion Sanders

When discussing fast football players with impressive career stats we have to mention Deion Sanders. “Neon Deion” or “Prime Time” as Deion Sanders is nicknamed was born in August of 1967. He remained in the National Football League for fourteen amazing seasons.

During his career, he played for the Dallas Cowboys, Atlanta Falcons, Baltimore Ravens, Washington Redskins, and San Francisco 49ers.

Amazing Deion also spent nine whole seasons in the Major League Baseball where he played for the San Francisco Giants, Cincinnati Reds, Atlanta Braves, and New York Yankees.

With one appearance at the World Series and two Super Bowl trophies, he is the only professional athlete to compete in both championship tournaments.

Deion Sanders started his career playing at Florida State University. Besides his love for football and baseball, he was also an avid track and field competitor.

His professional career started in 1988 when he was selected by the New York Yankees. When it comes to his professional football career, he started playing for the Atlanta Falcons after being drafted in 1989. He played for the team for four seasons before he transferred to the San Francisco 49ers.

8. Tyreek Hill

Unlike several other fast football players on this list, Tyreek Hill is still actively playing in the NFL for the Kansas City Chiefs. Fresh out of college, Tyreek Hill 40 time is 4.29 seconds.

Coupled with other talents, there is no wonder how and why it made it to the NFL. he was selected by his current team in the fifth round of the NFL Draft 2016.

Tyreek Hill was born in March of 1994 in Georgia. He finished high school in his hometown. After enrolling at Garden City Community College, he practiced football and also ran track.

During his first two years of college, he played for the Garden City Broncbusters team. In 2014, he had his first game with the Oklahoma State Cowboys team.

While he was on top of his game, he was dismissed from the team.

In September of 2015, he joined the Tiger team after enrolling at the University of West Alabama. While most experts predicted that Tyreek Hill will not make it to the NFL in 2016 due to his serious domestic violence charges, he was drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs where he currently plays as a wide receiver.

9. Chris Johnson

Chris Johnson’s professional career started in 2008. He remained playing in the NFL until 2018. Chris Johnson was not only one of the fastest NFL players but also one of the most terrifying opponents.

In 2009, amazing Johnson set a record in the league with two thousand five hundred and nine yards. His best 40 time is 4.24 seconds which was a record back in the day.

Chris Johnson was born in September of 1985 in Florida. Before making it big in the NFL, Chris Johnson was a track star at his high school in Orlando.

At the Florida 4D Championship in the one hundred meters race, he finished second behind Walter Dix.

After accepting a scholarship from East Carolina University, he joined the East Carolina Pirates. He remained on the team for four seasons.

His professional career started at the Tennessee Titans following the NFL Draft 2008. On the 26th of July, he signed a five-year contract with the franchise.

He won his debut game against the Jacksonville Jaguars. In his second game for the team, he ran for one hundred and nine yards on nineteen carriers.

Chris Johnson joined the New York Nets in April of 2014 for one season. In August of 2015, he signed for the Arizona Cardinals.  After ten tremendous seasons in the NFL, he retired in 2018.

10. Dri Archer

Our top ten list of the fastest players in NFL history also includes Dri Archer. Dri Archer is one of those NFL players who possess almost a superhuman speed coupled with other talents.

His forty-yard record of 4.26 seconds is one of the best records in the history of the sport.

Dri Archer was born in August of 1991 in Tampa, Florida. During his high school years, he played football and basketball and he was also on his school’s track team.

He was quite successful at track and field competitions held in Florida. In the one hundred meters final of the Florida state track competition, he finished second ahead of Denard Robinson and after Dentarius Locke. As expected, he was offered several scholarships thanks to his sports success.

He decided to join Kent State University that offered him a football scholarship. After joining the college team, he played eleven games during his first season as a running back and a wide receiver.

Before the following season started, he was removed from the team for unknown reasons. He returned for the 2012 season. He joined the NFL Pittsburgh Steelers in 2014. He was selected in the third round. In his debut match, the team played against the Cleveland Browns.

For several months, he played for the New York Jets before he joined the Buffalo Bills in May of 2016. Unfortunately, he did not make it to the first team and retired shortly.

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