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Tony Dorsett is considered one of the greatest running backs in NFL history. On Sept. 26, 1988 while playing his final NFL season with the Denver Broncos, Dorsett moved into second place on the NFL all-time rushing list with 12,306 rushing yards, and eventually finished his career with 12,739 yards. At the time, Dorsett trailed only Walter Payton, but now ranks fifth behind Payton, Emmitt Smith, Barry Sanders and Eric Dickerson.
By the time Dorsett completed his 12-year career, he had collected a victory in Super Bowl XII, four Pro Bowl selections, one All-Pro honor and three All-NFC selections.
Dorsett enjoyed most of his success with the Dallas Cowboys, where he arrived in 1977 via a draft-day deal with the Seattle Seahawks. Then Cowboys president and General Manager Tex Schramm paid what seemed like a bundle for the right to draft Dorsett: one first-round and three second-round choices.
However, the Dorsett deal paid dividends in his very first year with the Cowboys – he rushed for 1,007 yards to earn NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year honors and set the rushing bar for rookie running backs in Dallas.
One of the most notable moments of Dorsett's career came on Jan. 2, 1983, playing before a Monday Night Football television audience against the Minnesota Vikings. Dorsett received a handoff from quarterback Danny White and proceeded to run 99-yards for a touchdown, thus recording an unbreakable NFL record. Dorsett's greatest season came in 1981 when he rushed for 1,646 yards, a franchise record at the time, a total that now ranks third to only Emmitt Smith's two 1700-yard seasons.
Dorsett won the Heisman Trophy in 1976 at the University of Pittsburgh and was the first Pitt football player to have his jersey retired. Dorsett left Pittsburgh as a four-time All-American and four-time 1,000-yard rusher. His final collegiate highlight was a 27-3 victory over Georgia in the Sugar Bowl to claim the national title.
In 1994 Dorsett became the ninth Cowboys player inducted into the Ring of Honor, and that same year he was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.