Who Holds the NFL’s Single-Game Record for Most Receiving Yards?
On Sunday, Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill grabbed seven catches for 203 yards and a pair of touchdowns… in the first quarter. Hill’s record-setting pace dropped off, and he finished the game with 269 yards, which ranks No. 15 all-time for most single-game receiving yards in NFL history.
In the more than 100 years of the NFL, there have been some spectacular performances by receivers. However, only a select few have topped the 300-yard mark. Here’s a list of those receivers who have achieved the feat and made it to the top of the list for most receiving yards in a single NFL game.
6. Julio Jones, Atlanta Falcons (2016) — 300 yards
In 2016, Atlanta Falcons receiver Julio Jones made the Pro Bowl and All-Pro team with 1,409 yards for the season. On October 2 against the Carolina Panthers, Jones accounted for 300 of those yards hauling in 12 catches from Matt Ryan, his last one, a 75-yard catch-and-run touchdown. In the process, Jones set the franchise record for most receiving yards in a game, destroying his previous mark of 259 yards set in 2014.
5. Cloyce Box, Detroit Lions (1950) — 302 yards
Cloyce Box was the first of two Detroit Lions receivers to surpass the 300-yard mark and make the list for most receiving yards in a single NFL game. In a 1950 matchup against the Baltimore Colts, Box caught four touchdown tosses from quarterback Bobby Layne, the shortest, a 22-yarder at the end of the game. He added touchdowns of 32, 67, and 82 yards to amass his 302 yards for the game.
4. Jim Benton, Cleveland Rams (1945) — 303 yards
Jim Benton played just nine games in 1945, but he led the NFL in receiving with 1,087 yards, a large chunk of it coming on Thanksgiving Day against the Detroit Lions. In that contest, Benton hauled in 10 passes with one touchdown and 303 yards, becoming the first player to eclipse the 300-yard mark in NFL history.
3. Stephone Paige, Kansas City Chiefs (1985) — 309 yards
Forty years after Jim Benton first topped the 300-yard plateau, Stephone Paige did it for the Kansas City Chiefs against the San Diego Chargers. Paige started the game off impressively hauling in a 56-yard touchdown pass from Todd Blackledge in the first quarter. He added an 84-yarder in the second and finished the game with eight grabs for 309 yards.
2. Calvin Johnson, Detroit Lions (2013) — 329 yards
In 2013, Calvin Johnson became the second Detroit Lions receiver to eclipse 300 yards in a game when he and quarterback Matthew Stafford torched the Dallas Cowboys defense, including an 87-yard catch where he failed to score. He added a two-yard touchdown grab and totaled 14 receptions on his way to 329 yards, which incredibly is only good enough for second-most receiving yards for a single game in NFL history.
1. Flipper Anderson, LA Rams (1989) — 336 yards
Former LA Rams receiver Flipper Anderson tops the list for most receiving yards in a single NFL game, and he did it back in 1989. Facing the New Orleans Saints, Anderson and quarterback Jim Everett connected 15 times for 336 yards and one touchdown. Anderson’s longest catch for the game was just 50 yards.
Anderson’s record for most receiving yards in an NFL game has stood for 31 years. Interestingly, Jerry Rice is the only Hall of Famer to crack the top 10 with 289 yards in 1995. It just goes to show that it’s not necessarily the best all-time receivers who have the best individual games, but those who have a special connection with their quarterback for that one game and ride it all the way into the record books.
All stats courtesy of Pro Football Reference.