The following is a list of the players who have rushed for the most touchdowns in a single game in NFL history. The player who set the record for most rushing touchdowns in a game holds the longest standing records in NFL history.
Most Rushing Touchdowns in a Single NFL Game
1. Ernie Nevers – 6
Ernie Nevers holds the NFL record for most rushing touchdowns in a game with six. Nevers accomplished the feat on Thanksgiving Day, November 28, 1929, while playing for the Chicago Cardinals vs the Chicago Bears.
In that game, Ernie Nevers also kicked four extra points, so he recorded 40 total points in the game, which is also an NFL record. The Cardinals beat the Bears, 40-6, with Ernie Nevers scoring all of the Cards points.
The six touchdowns in the game also set the NFL record for most touchdowns in a game by a player. That record has since been tied by Dub Jones and Gale Sayers, but Nevers still holds the records for most rushing touchdowns and most points scored in a game by himself.
T-2. Clinton Portis – 5
Clinton Portis is the most recent player to rush for five touchdowns in a game. Portis accomplished the feat on December 7, 2003, while playing for the Denver Broncos vs the Kansas City Chiefs.
The touchdown runs were one, 11, 28, 53, and 59 yards. Portis ran 22 times in the game for 218 yards, as the Broncos clobbered the Chiefs, 45-27.
T-2. James Stewart – 5
James Stewart of the Jacksonville Jaguars ran for five touchdowns in a game vs the Philadelphia Eagles on October 12, 1997. Stewart scored on touchdown runs of one, one, two, seven and eight yards. For the game, he carried the ball 15 times for 102 yards, as the Jaguars won, 38-21.
T-2. Ricky Watters – 5
Ricky Watters scored five touchdowns in a playoff game on January 15, 1992, while playing for the San Francisco 49ers vs the New York Giants. Watters holds the NFL record for most rushing touchdowns in a playoff game.
His touchdown runs were one, one, two, two, and six yards. For the game, Ricky Watters carried the ball 24 times and rushed for 118 yards, as the 49ers crushed the Giants, 44-3.
T-2. Cookie Gilchrist – 6
Cookie Gilchrist scored five rushing touchdowns in a game on December 8, 1963, while playing for the Buffalo Bills vs the New York Jets. Gilchrist scored on runs of one, one, four, six, and 19 yards. He ran for 243 yards in the game on 36 carries, as the Bills crushed the Jets, 45-14.
T-2. Jim Brown – 5
Jim Brown of the Cleveland Browns ran for five touchdowns in a game vs the Baltimore Colts on November 1, 1959. Brown had touchdown runs of one, one, three, 17, and 80 yards. He rushed for 178 yards on 32 carries, as the Browns won, 38-31.