Shortest Players in the NFL | That One Sports Show (2023)

Geoff Peterfy | October 2, 2017 | Last Updated: September 12, 2020

For the sake of not getting too crazy, we’ve kept it inside the last 25 years or so. The shortest player in the NFL of all time was Jack Shapiro, who stood at just under 5’1″. Weighing only 119 pounds, Shapiro played one game in 1929 to become the smallest to ever play a game in the NFL. His time was short, pun intended, but he made his mark. Here’s a look at some other vertically challenged NFL players.

Current Shortest Players in the NFL

At the start of the 2020 season, the following players are the shortest in the NFL that are on a team:

  • Tarik Cohen – 5’6″ – 179 lbs. – Chicago Bears
  • Boston Scott – 5’6″ – 203 lbs. – Philadelphia Eagles
  • Nickell Robey-Coleman – 5’7″ – 169lbs. – Philadelphia Eagles
  • Clyde Edwards-Helaire – 5’7″ – 210 lbs. – Kansas City Chiefs
  • Kyler Murray – 5’10” – 207 lbs. – Arizona Cardinals

More details on each below!

Trindon Holliday – 5’5″ – 162 lbs.

Shortest Players in the NFL | That One Sports Show (1)
A kick return specialist, Holliday ran his way to 2 total punt return touchdowns and 2 total kick returns. He’s no Josh Cribbs, but with smaller legs, it’s tough to blow past everyone. He did manage to muster 26.9 yards per kick return and 9.3 yards per punt return during his time with Houston, Denver and San Francisco. Holliday has been out of the league since 2015.

Deonte Harris – 5’6″ – 170 lbs.

Shortest Players in the NFL | That One Sports Show (2)
New to the NFL in 2019, Deonte Harris is making a name for himself as a punt returner for the New Orleans Saints. With a 78-yard return against the Jets, folks are already comparing him to the next player on our list.

(Video) Top 10 Shortest Players

Tarik Cohen – 5’6″ – 179 lbs.

The Human Joystick has made quite an impression with the Bears. While his numbers aren’t crazy by any means, he is starting to get some hype as “the next Darren Sproles.” Those are some big shoes to fill in terms of production, but he’d probably fit pretty nicely in his actual cleats. Cohen became the shortest player to throw a touchdown in the modern era onOct 15, 2017.

Boston Scott – 5’6″ – 203 lbs.

Shortest Players in the NFL | That One Sports Show (3)
Boston Scott is in his third year in the NFL and after spending some time on the practice squad, Scott totaled 721 all-purpose yards and ranked second on the team with five rushing TDs in 2019. Now playing second chair to Miles Sanders, Scott is the shortest active running back in the NFL.

Clyde Edwards-Helaire – 5’7″ – 210lbs.

The 2020 rookie running back for the Kansas City Chiefs slammed onto the scene in the first game of the 2020 season against the Houston Texans. Edwards-Helaire scampered for 1400 yards and 16 touchdowns in his final season at LSU and in his NFL debut rushed for 138 yards and 1 TD. Edwards-Helaire looks to be a major addition for an already stout Chiefs offense.

Nickell Robey-Coleman – 5’7″ – 169lbs.

Shortest Players in the NFL | That One Sports Show (4)
While Robey-Coleman is one of the smallest DB’s in recent NFL history, he’s had a decent career in the NFL, logging 178 tackles. After a three-year stint with the Bills, he is now with the Rams playing second fiddle to the 6’2″ Trumaine Johnson.

CJ Anderson – 5’8″ – 225 lbs.

Shortest Players in the NFL | That One Sports Show (5)

(Video) SHORTEST Players In NFL History

Jan 12, 2019; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Rams running back C.J. Anderson (35) runs the ball during the first half against the Dallas Cowboys in a NFC Divisional playoff football game at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Anderson is one of the more rotund short guys and hes been nailing it during the 2018 season with the Rams as Todd Gurley’s backup. He racked up over a thousand yards in 2017 for the Broncos before they released him. Anderson has had some trouble with his weight and during the summer of 2014, weighed 243 pounds. Regardless of weight, his stature and attitude are helping the Rams get deeper into the playoffs. Heading into the 2020 season, Anderson is a free agent.

Kyler Murray – 5’10” – 207 lbs.

Oklahoma Quarterback Kyler Murray made history in the 2019 NFL Draft for plenty of reasons. He was the first Heisman from the same school where a Heisman had won the year before and hadalsobeen drafted at number one, etc, etc. Kliff Kingsbury and the Cardinals couldn’t be more excited and who knows whether Kyler Murray will pay off in the long run. In theshort term, he’s one of two shortest quarterbacks of all time. It’s even possible that he’s 5’8″.

Elvis Dumervil – 5’11” – 255lbs.

Shortest Players in the NFL | That One Sports Show (6)
Below average height for a defensive end has not slowed Kool down at all. In his eleven seasons in the NFL, Dumervil has gone to the Pro Bowl five times and led the NFL in sacks in 2009. He is now with the San Francisco 49ers after being released by the Ravens earlier this year.

J.P. Darche – 6’0″ – 243lbs.

Shortest Players in the NFL | That One Sports Show (7)
We had to get at least one lineman on here. There are several more of similar stature and it seems like the smallest of the bunch are all longsnappers. Darche played one season in the CFL before landing with the Seahawks who used his long snapping services through the 2006 season.

While this list is mostly offensive players, trends show that soon the shortest players will be on defense. Did we miss someone? Let us know below in the comments.

Honorable Mentions

  • JJ Moses – WR – 5’6″
  • Jojo Natson – WR – 5’7″ – 153 lbs.
  • Andrew Hawkins – WR – 5’7″
  • Taylor Gabriel – WR – 5’7″
  • Branden Oliver – RB – 5’6″
  • Dion Lewis – RB – 5’7″
  • Maurice Jones Drew – RB – 5’7″
  • Ricky Williams – RB – 5’7″
  • Captain Munnerlyn – DB – 5’8″
  • Brian Rolle – LB – 5’10”
  • London Fletcher – LB – 5’10”

Players We’ve Retired From The List

Darren Sproles – 5’6″ – 181 lbs.

Shortest Players in the NFL | That One Sports Show (8)
Speaking of Sproles, let’s take a quick look at the man who may potentially have the longest tenure of a little guy. Unfortunately his 12th season ended quite abruptly when he broke his arm and tore his ACL all in the same play. Hopefully this isn’t the end of his career, but if it is, he’ll have set the bar for all little guys that follow with 22 rushing touchdowns, 30 receiving and over 8,000 yards from scrimmage. Sproles retired in 2019 and is now a personnel consultant for the Eagles.

(Video) WHO ARE THE TALLEST AND THE SHORTEST PLAYERS EVER IN SPORTS - NUMBERS GAME

Replaced by Clyde Edwards-Helaire 9/12/20

Jacquizz Rodgers – 5’6″ – 190 lbs.

Shortest Players in the NFL | That One Sports Show (9)
According to his NFL Draft profile, Rodgers is “very undersized”. O rly? Bouncing from the Falcons to the Bears and now at Tampa Bay, Quizz has only mustered more than 370 yards once in a season (2016). With the Muscle Hamster set to re-appear this next week, it looks like Rodgers will take a backseat to an already slow start to the 2017 season. Headed into the 2020 season, Rodgers is a free agent.
Replaced by Boston Scott 9/12/20

Doug Martin – 5’9″ – 223 lbs.

Shortest Players in the NFL | That One Sports Show (10)
The Muscle Hamster may have taken a little enhancement cocktail to try and improve strength and speed (thus his 3-game suspension to start 2017), but one thing he can’t change, without major surgery, is his height. The Dougernaut has had an iffy career, ending up hurt in at least 3 of his 5 seasons so far, but you can bet he’s had October circled on his calendar for quite some time.
Replaced 1/13/19 with CJ Anderson

Wes Welker – 5’9″ – 190 lbs.

Welker had his best seasons while in New England but across his career he managed 10,075 yards from scrimmage (just shy of 10k receiving). He led the league 3 times in total receptions and had an epic 99 yard touchdown in the 2011 season. Sorry for the music in the above video.
Removed 1/13/19

Doug Flutie – 5’10” – 180 lbs.

Our shortest quarterback, Douglas Richard Flutie managed to become a successful quarterback in the USFL / NFL / CFL even though he stands about 7 inches shorter than the average lineman (in 2015, the average lineman was 6’5″ 312 pounds). Flutie is known for his Flutie Flakes, his Foundation and the above video. The Miracle in Miami, as it was dubbed, was a 64-yard heave that closed the game on a Hail Mary that makes Aaron Rodgers look weak. A lesser known fact is that Flutie had 212 rushing yards, and 4 rushing touchdowns after the age of 40, the most of any player playing in their 5th decade.
Replaced by Kyler Murray 4/26/19

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FAQs

Who is the shortest NFL player currently? ›

Who is the shortest player in the NFL? There are three players in the NFL who stand at 5-foot-6: New England Patriots running back J.J. Taylor, Philadelphia Eagles running back Boston Scott and New Orleans Saints receiver/return specialist Deonte Harty.

Who is the shortest starter in the NFL? ›

Trindon Holliday
No. 11, 16, 19
Height:5 ft 5 in (1.65 m)
Weight:166 lb (75 kg)
Career information
High school:Zachary (LA) Northeast
18 more rows

Who is the small NFL player? ›

Trindon Holliday (5'5" 165)

At 5'5", Holliday is the smallest player in the NFL. But, he is also one of the fastest.

Who has the shortest NFL career ever? ›

Which NFL Hall of Famer has the shortest career? Nevers, who was inducted in 1963, played just 54 games in the NFL for the Duluth Eskimos (1926-27) and Chicago Cardinals (1929-31).

Who is the shortest famous football player? ›

They are not the shortest though, the shortest player to play professional football may be Polish midfielder Marcin Garuch at 1.53m (5' 0"). Short football players are generally midfield players. Comparing World Cup players (2002-2018), the goalies were on average the tallest, the midfielders the shortest.

Who is the heaviest NFL player? ›

Aaron Gibson
No. 71, 63, 78
Born:September 27, 1977 Indianapolis, Indiana, U.S.
Height:6 ft 6 in (1.98 m)
Weight:370 lb (168 kg)
Career information
17 more rows

Who is the fastest NFL player? ›

Fastest 40-Yard Dash Times in NFL Combine History
RankPlayerYear
1John Ross2017
2Kalon Barnes2022
3Chris Johnson2008
3Rondel Melendez1999
7 more rows
3 days ago

What is the NFL minimum age? ›

There is no minimum age to play in the NFL; however, you have to have been out of high school for at least three years, making it unlikely that a player would be younger than 19 or 20.

What is the minimum height for NFL? ›

Offensive and defensive linemen tend to be at least 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m) and are frequently as tall as 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m) to be massive enough to effectively play their positions. Height is especially an advantage for defensive linemen, giving them the ability to knock down passes with their outstretched arms.

Are there Waterboys in the NFL? ›

To date, Waterboys has served clean water to over 500,000 people, and the NFL Waterboys program donations now help our neighbors in the United States and abroad.

Who is the most humble NFL player? ›

The Most Humble NFL Stars of All Time
  • Haloti Ngata. 8 of 26.
  • Patrick Willis. 7 of 26. ...
  • Aaron Rodgers. 6 of 26. ...
  • Jason Taylor. 5 of 26. ...
  • “Mean” Joe Greene. 4 of 26. ...
  • Troy Aikman. 3 of 26. ...
  • Charles Woodson. 2 of 26. ...
  • Roger Staubach. 1 of 26. ...

Who weighs the least in the NFL? ›

Originally coming into the NFL at 149 pounds, Banks was the lightest active player in the league. Banks is also currently the lightest player in the CFL at 150 pounds.
...
Brandon Banks.
Personal information
Undrafted:2010
Career history
Washington Redskins (2010–2012) Hamilton Tiger-Cats (2013–2021) Toronto Argonauts (2022)
19 more rows

Has there ever been a 7 foot NFL player? ›

At 7 ft 0 in, Sligh is the tallest player in professional American football history. The next tallest are Matt O'Donnell at 6 ft 11 in, Morris Stroud at 6 ft 10 in, and Dan Skipper at 6 ft 10 in.

Who is the oldest to play NFL? ›

At age 45, it's well-known Tom Brady is the oldest NFL player for the 2022 season, and his Buccaneers have the oldest average roster by age in the league. Tampa Bay entered the season with some of the best NFL odds to win the Super Bowl, with experience certainly playing a role.

Who has the youngest NFL roster? ›

Notes: The Detroit Lions sported the NFL's youngest roster in 2022.

Who is the best short NFL player? ›

At 5'1” and 119 pounds, Jack Shapiro was the shortest and smallest NFL player of all-time. Shapiro played just one game in the National Football League – way back in 1929 – for the Staten Island Stapletons. Born in 1907 to a family of Russian immigrants, Shapiro grew up extremely undersized.

What position in football has the shortest players? ›

This boxplot also shows that Running Backs are the shortest players on average. The shortest player from the samples was a Wide Receiver though. Wide Receivers seem to have the largest range of height out of all positions.

Who is the 5 foot 5 inch football player? ›

Xherdan Shaqiri- 5'5 feet. Xherdan Shaqiri is a well-known figure in world football. The Swiss winger is a two-time Champions League winner and has played for giants like FC Bayern Munich and Liverpool.

Who was the heaviest NFL QB? ›

At 285 lb (129 kg), Lorenzen was the heaviest quarterback to play in the NFL. He was nicknamed "Hefty Lefty" because of his weight and being left-handed.

Who can bench the heaviest in the NFL? ›

However, since Ernest went undrafted and only played one season of professional football, the NFL recognizes Stephen Paea as the record holder of the bench press.

Is there a weight limit in football? ›

Maximum weight for Quarterback, Running Back, Wide Receiver or any player in the backfield will be 90 lbs. 90 lb. weight limit excludes the tight end who must be lined up within 1-yard of the guard. Any player who exceeds the weight limit must have a red dot sticker on the front of his/her helmet.

Who is the fastest QB in the NFL? ›

Of the recorded times from Next Gen Stats, Fields has the quickest time for any quarterback recorded at 21.23 mph over those two years. He has averaged 20.21 mph on his 15 listed runs.
...
Fastest QB 40 times.
PlayerDraft Year40 time
2019Trace McSorley4.57
2013Geno Smith4.58
8 more rows
Jan 21, 2023

What is the fastest NFL position? ›

Average time by position

According to a five-year NFL combine report, wide receivers and cornerbacks had the fastest average times at 4.48, followed by running backs at 4.49. The following average times were measured between 2000 and 2012 at the NFL combine for players who played at least 5 games.

Who is the fastest WR ever? ›

Bob Hayes, WR

Bob Hayes is arguably the fastest NFL player ever. He was nicknamed “Bullet Bob” due to the meteoric speed he had. It was rightfully so since he set an Olympic world record of 10.06 seconds in the 100-meter dash.

Is there a NFL for kids? ›

NFL FLAG, the official flag football organization of the NFL, offers youth athletes a fun, inclusive, non-contact sport. They serve over half a million kids and operate over 1,600 local leagues.

Can a 12 year old play football? ›

Ideally, kids should stick with flag (or non-contact) football until they are at least 13 years old. One small study of retired NFL players have shown an association between cognitive impairment and playing tackle football prior to age 12.

What is the NFL 3 year rule? ›

The NFL has established a three-year rule, meaning prospects must be at least three years removed from high school to enter the draft.

Is there a 7 foot NFL player? ›

At 7 ft 0 in, Sligh is the tallest player in professional American football history. The next tallest are Matt O'Donnell at 6 ft 11 in, Morris Stroud at 6 ft 10 in, and Dan Skipper at 6 ft 10 in.

What NFL players are shorter than 5 10? ›

Little Big Men - The NFL's shortest players
  • 1 / 10. Trindon Holliday - 5'5" ...
  • 2 / 10. Darren Sproles - 5'6" ...
  • 3 / 10. Jacquizz Rodgers - 5'6" ...
  • 4 / 10. Maurice Jones-Drew - 5'7" ...
  • 5 / 10. Brandon Banks - 5'7" ...
  • 6 / 10. Ray Rice - 5'8" ...
  • 7 / 10. Dexter McCluster - 5'8" ...
  • 8 / 10. Wes Welker - 5'8"

Who is 5 8 in the NFL? ›

Cole Beasley becomes all-time TD leader for NFL players 5-foot-8 or shorter
Ht &
RkPlayerHt
1Cole Beasley5-8
2Darren Sproles5-6
3Stephen Baker5-8
7 more rows
Dec 7, 2020

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