With the exception of the No. 1 player on our list (I’ll give you a hint, he’s a real sweet guy), you could argue for any number of top-five combinations for these next several players. When you’re talking about a franchise as steeped in history as the Bears, getting to this point in the list means you’re talking about all Hall of Famers to begin with.
One Pro Football Hall of Famer that Bears fans far and wide remember to this day is running back Gale Sayers, who comes in at No. 5 on our list of the best players in franchise history.
Hailing from the University of Kansas and affectionately nicknamed “The Kansas Comet,” Sayers came to the Bears with the fourth overall selection of the 1965 NFL Draft. Sayers quickly lived up to his nickname, streaking his way (well, not that way) down the field en route to 14 rushing touchdowns and Rookie of the Year honors in his debut season.
He followed that up the very next year by leading the league in rushing and amassing over 2,400 all-purpose yards. Sayers was a home-run hitter in every sense of the word at the running back position.
While injuries ultimately derailed what could have been a lengthier career, Sayers still managed to earn first-team All-Pro honors in each of his first five seasons in the NFL. He rushed for 5.0 yards per carry during his time in the league, which still ranks eighth-best among NFL players all time (tied with Barry Sanders, even).
In a league rich with talent at the running back position over the years, Gale Sayers remains one of its most electric and a player who inspired generations of runners after he had stepped away from the game.