Frank Gore will officially retire from the NFL as one of the greatest running backs in league history, calling it a career after 16 NFL seasons. Gore will sign a one-day contract today with the San Francisco 49ers and retire with the team that drafted him, his agent Drew Rosenhaus told ESPN. Gore compiled 11,073 of his 16,000 career rushing yards in San Francisco. Gore had confirmed his plans to walk away from the game as a 49er earlier this offseason.
Gore will retire with the third-most rushing yards in NFL history (16,000) and the fifth-most all-purpose yards in NFL history (19,992). His 3,735 career attempts are third in NFL history and he is just one of 23 players in league history with 100 total touchdowns. A five-time Pro Bowl selection and member of the 2010s All-Decade Team, Gore had nine career 1,000-yard seasons and was the definition of consistency at running back.
Gore is the the greatest running back in NFL history after the age of 30, which is where he sealed his Hall of Fame candidacy. He finished with 7,161 yards since turning 30, 1,372 more than Emmitt Smith (5,789) — who was second on the all-time list. Four of the top-five running backs in rushing yards after turning 30 are in the Hall of Fame.
Gore finished with 187 carries and 653 yards and two touchdowns in 2020, as he was the No. 1 running back for the New York Jets at 37. He did not play in 2021, but was the oldest player to lead his team in rushing in NFL history.
Here are the NFL records Gore owns:
- Most seasons with 1,200 yards from scrimmage — 12
- Most consecutive seasons with at least 500 yards rushing — 16
- Most consecutive seasons with at least 600 yards rushing — 14
- Most consecutive seasons with at least 700 yards rushing — 13 (tied with Smith)
- Most career games by an NFL running back — 241
Gore is the first player in NFL history with 12 consecutive seasons of 1,200 yards from scrimmage. He joins Smith, Walter Payton, Barry Sanders, and Curtis Martin as the only players with nine 1,000-yard rushing campaigns. Only Smith and Payton have more rushing yards than Gore.
Gore’s longevity at running back certainly makes his career one of the most unique for his position, making his records for running backs 30 or over hard to reach at a position where most players are retired before they reach that mark. His performance over 30 is one of the great accomplishments in league history.