Top 10 Shortest Players In NFL History

Not every football player is 6 feet 3 inches tall and 300 pounds. Some of the greatest players have been under six feet tall, with many falling between the ages of five and ten. Take, for example, 5-foot-9 wide receiver Wes Welker. Welker was a five-year pro-bowler who won the NFL receptions title three times, in 2007, 2009, and 2011.

He is also the leading receiver in New England. However, Welker and several other 5-8 players are simply too tall to be included on our list of the shortest NFL players of all time; they are all 5-7 or shorter.

10. Terron Ward, Atlanta Falcons (5ft7-1.73m)-Running Back

Photo: atlallday


Terron Ward knows it's difficult to follow in his older brother's footsteps, and he doesn't want to. Being T.J.'s younger brother cannot be easy, even though both are free agents these days. Terron Ward spent three years with the Falcons from 2015 to 2017. In 2015, he appeared in 13 games and five in 2016. In 2017, he was the team's third running back, appearing in 14 games.

9. Mark McMillian, Kansas City Chiefs (5ft7-1.73m)- Cornerback

Photo: nfl

Mighty Mouse was a 1942 animated character created by Terrytoons. Cornerback Mark McMillian was the NFL's "Mighty Mouse" in the 1990s, playing for five different teams, most notably the Eagles, who drafted him, and the Chiefs, where he led the league in interception return yards in 1997. McMillian got his nickname because of his small NFL stature combined with his vertical leap height, which allowed him to cover receivers.

8. Tommylee Lewis, New Orleans Saints (5ft7-1.73m) -Wide receiver

Photo: sidelionreport

Tommylee Lewis, a former Saint who is now a free agent, became a return specialist for New Orleans. His career totals are 20 receptions, 252 receiving yards, and two receiving touchdowns. And he is nearly 27 years old, he still has many opportunities to update his totals if he can find a team willing to pay him despite being one of the shortest NFL players ever.

7. Maurice Jones-Drew, Jacksonville Jaguars (5ft7-1.73m)-Running back

Photo: youtube

Running back Maurice Jones-Drew was a Jaguar in every sense of the word. He was with the team for eight years and holds eight franchise records, including the most career touchdowns with 81, 68 of which were rushing touchdowns. 

In 2014, he signed a three-year contract with Oakland and appeared in 12 unremarkable games. In 2015, he announced his retirement at the age of 29. He resigned from the Jaguars after one game in April, so his official retirement papers would come from the team.

Jones Drew's career demonstrates that stature isn't everything.

6. Andrew Hawkins, Cincinnati Bengals (5ft7-1.73m)-Wide receiver

Photo: cleveland

While putting clay under his heels and weights in his pockets didn't help Andrew Hawkins get noticed at the 2008 pro day in Toledo, he eventually signed with the Rams in January 2011, only to be waived in August. The Bengals signed him the next day. He signed with the Browns in 2014. 

In his first season in Cleveland, he had 63 receptions for 824 yards and two touchdowns. However, he was placed on the injured reserve in 2015. He signed a one-year contract with the Patriots in May 2017 but announced his retirement a few months later.

5. Jakeem Grant, Miami Dolphins (5ft7-1.73m) Wide receiver/return specialist


Jakeem Grant was drafted by Miami in the 2016 NFL Draft and is still with the team today. He scored his first career touchdown on a 74-yard punt return during his rookie season. Grant scored on a 102-yard kickoff return in the first week of 2018. That's why the Dolphins offered him a four-year contract extension in August, which he accepted.

4. Darren Sproles, Philadelphia Eagles (5ft6-1.7m)-Running back

Photo: insidetheiggles

Darren Sproles has repeatedly demonstrated that size isn't everything. He's been dubbed one of the NFL's "most impactful players." The 36-year-old began his career in San Diego in 2005, then moved to New Orleans for a few years before settling in Philadelphia in 2014. He won a Super Bowl, made the Pro Bowl three years in a row, and was named first-team All-Pro twice as an Eagle. With 64 touchdowns, he is the 14th most prolific active player.

3. Jacquizz Rodgers, Atlanta Falcons (5ft6-1.7m)- Running back

Photo: sportingnews

Jacquizz Rodgers was selected by the Falcons in the 2011 NFL Draft and quickly established himself as a dependable back for the team. Following his time with the Falcons, he signed for one year with Chicago, a year he'd probably prefer we forget. 

Rodgers signed with the Buccaneers the following year and stayed with them from 2016 to 2018. He signed with the Saints in early August but was released by the end of the month. Rodgers, who is now a free agent, has appeared in 110 games, starting 14 of them.

2. Tarik Cohen, Chicago Bears (5ft6-1.7m)-Running back

Photo: ontapsportsnet


Tarik Cohen was drafted by the Bears in 2017 after a stellar college career. He's quick, and he made the Pro Bowl and was named First-Team All-Pro in 2018. That same year, he received the Brian Piccolo Award. He holds the record for being the shortest player in modern history to throw a touchdown pass.

1. Trindon Holliday, Denver Broncos (5 ft 5-1.67m)-Kick returner/punt returner

Photo: fansided

He's been a free agent since 2015, but he hasn't retired. Trindon Holliday has played for six different NFL teams. Although he is currently not playing, he is still the NFL's shortest player. Holliday, a former college sprinter, had the highest vertical jump on Sportscasting's list at 42 inches. He is best known for his work as a Broncos kick and punt returner.

Finally, while he played before the modern era of football, Jack "Soapy" Shapiro, a member of the Staten Island Stapleton team, only appeared in one official game in 1929. Shapiro, who stands 5-foot-1, played college football for a fruitful New York University team.


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