This Day In Sports History (November 20th) — Walter Payton
It was on this day in 1977 that Walter Payton rushed for 275 yards during a game against the Minnesota Vikings. That stunning performance on the ground would set the NFL record for most rushing yards in a single game.
The previous NFL record for most rushing yards in a game was held by Bills running back O.J. Simpson, who recorded 273 yards during a game against the Detroit Lions one year earlier. As for Payton, his record-breaking performance was even more impressive because of the fact that he was able to accomplish it while dealing with a 101-degree fever and intense flu. But no sickness was slowing down “Sweetness” on this day, as he carried the ball a whopping 40 times, and added a touchdown during the Bears’ 10-7 victory.
Payton’s record was eventually broken by Corey Dillon, who rushed for 278 yards against the Broncos in 2000. Three other running backs have since surpassed Dillon’s total, including Vikings running back Adrian Peterson, whose 296 yard performance against the Chargers back in 2007 still stands as the NFL record for most rushing yards in a single game.
Carlos Boozer, NBA – Born on November 20, 1981 (age 32) in Aschaffenburg, West Germany
Joey Galloway, NFL – Born on November 20, 1971 (age 42) in Bellaire, Ohio
Mark Gastineau, NFL – Born on November 20, 1956 (age 57) in Ardmore, Oklahoma