Three years ago, I looked at the players who have scored the most game-winning touchdowns in NFL history. Let’s be clear: tracking things like game-winning touchdowns is only interesting in a trivial sort way, but hey, it’s May.
Yesterday, I looked at which players had the most game-winning touchdown passes, so today we look at all other scores (whether rushing, receiving, via fumble recovery or later, or even non-offensive TDs). I looked at all games, regular and postseason, in all leagues, from 1940 to 2015 (and playoff games from pre-1940), and counted all touchdowns scored that put the player’s team ahead for good (with one exception: I did not count touchdowns scored when down by 7 and the team successfully went for two afterwards).
After him are two Colts receivers, but not Hall of Famers Marvin Harrison and Raymond Berry. Harrison had just one fourth-quarter game-winning touchdown in his career way back in 1999, while Berry had five. But Jimmy Orr had nine (seven from Johnny Unitas, and two from Bobby Layne during his Steelers days), while Reggie Wayne had eight (four from Peyton Manning, two from Andrew Luck, and one each from … Dan Orlovsky and Joseph Addai against the 49ers). The table below shows all players who have scored at least four such touchdowns.
Finally, there are seven players who have multiple non-rushing/receiving game-winning touchdowns: Dwayne Harris, Patrick Peterson, Dante Hall, Mike Brown, Tamarick Vanover, Elvis Patterson, and Andy Nelson. Both of Peterson’s came on punt returns back during his rookie season; he has five career touchdowns, but only one since 2011. Still, he’s certainly the favorite to become the first player with three non-offensive game-winning touchdowns in the fourth quarter or overtime in NFL history. Then again, Dwayne Harris also has two such scores, including one last year.