With the Dallas Cowboys having joined the NFL in 1960, it’s tough to remember who the franchise leaders are in passing yards, sacks, touchdowns, etc. So we’re here to give you a quick refresher. Here are the Cowboys record holders for major statistics.
Most rushing yards
Emmitt Smith has the most rushing yards in Cowboys and NFL history. With Dallas, he ran for 17,162 yards, and that alone is good enough to top Chicago Bears legend Walter Payton’s 16,726 yards. Before retirement, Smith played two seasons with the Arizona Cardinals, and that helped beef up his career rushing yards total to 18,355.
Most rushing touchdowns
It would only make sense that the franchise leader in rushing yards also leads the rushing touchdowns category. Smith ran the ball across the goal line 153 times, which is also good enough to rank him at the top of the NFL’s all-time leaderboard. But the extra two years in the desert raised that number to 164.
Hall of Famer Tony Dorsett claims this record, unfortunately for him. He fumbled the ball 84 times, but it makes sense considering he also ranks second in rushing attempts with 2,755 in his 11 years in Dallas.
Most passing yards
You’re probably expecting to see Troy Aikman or Roger Staubach here, but Tony Romo’s 34,183 passing yards beats out both Hall of Famers. Romo joining Dallas as an undrafted free agent out of Eastern Illinois makes his story all the more interesting. But his two playoff wins in nine seasons as the primary starter has tainted the memory of Romo for many Cowboys fans.
Most interceptions thrown
You’d think Romo would take this one home, too, considering offenses passed the ball a lot more during his time compared to Staubach’s and Aikman’s. But this record belongs to Aikman, who threw 141 interceptions during his 12-year career. Not far behind Aikman is Danny White, who threw the ball to the other team 132 times.
Most receiving yards
Jason Witten and his 12,977 receiving yards take this category. While he wasn’t as skilled as Michael Irvin, Tony Hill or Drew Pearson, Witten was a lot more durable. Witten played in 255 games which is 96 more than Irvin. Yet, Irvin only trails Witten by 1,073 receiving yards. Witten ranks second in receiving yards in NFL history, trailing Tony Gonzalez, who wracked up 15,127 yards.
Most receiving touchdowns
Dez Bryant played only eight seasons in Dallas, but he made the most of his time. His 73 touchdowns top the list of receiving scores, despite playing significantly fewer games than the rest of the players in the top five. Bryant narrowly edged out Witten and Bob Hayes, who had 72 and 71 touchdowns, respectively.
Most made field goals
Dan Bailey knocked in 186 field goals during his seven years with the Cowboys. He also made 88.2% of his attempts, trailing only Kai Forbath, who made 100%. But Forbath only had 10 attempts while Bailey had 211.
Former fan favorite Sean Lee had 522 tackles. The Dallas faithful appreciated his hard-nosed style of football. Injuries caught up with him at the end of his career, and he hasn’t played since 2020, forcing him to retire last year.
Nobody in franchise history was as skilled at bringing down the QB as DeMarcus Ware. In nine seasons, he got to the passer 117 times. It put a smile on many Cowboys fans’ faces to see Ware win the Super Bowl with the Denver Broncos in the 2015 season.
Even though offenses had a run-first mentality during Mel Renfro’s playing days (1964-1977), he still wears the crown as the best ball-hawking defensive back in team history. Renfro had 52 interceptions in 14 seasons with the Cowboys.
Most wins by a coach
No surprises with this one. Tom Landry, who coached the Cowboys from 1960 to 1988, is the all-time leader in wins with 250. In total, Landry coached 418 games which gives the Hall of Famer a .607 win percentage.
The competition for this category isn’t very stiff, either. In second place behind Landry is Jason Garrett with 85 wins, 165 less than Landry.
Most games played
This is one of the tightest categories at the top of the leaderboard, but Witten squeaks away with the record at 255 games. Trailing by only two games is L.P LaDouceur, who was Dallas’ long snapper for 16 years.