- New York Jets (1971-1975)
- Washington Redskins (1976-1985)
Riggins began to play football at the Centralia High School in Centralia same place, which is located in Kansas. After graduating there he enrolled at the University of Kansas. In addition to the journalism degree, which he completed there, he also starred in the university's American football team. The Kansas Jayhawks, the name of the team were coached by Pepper Rodgers had last season and finished with a record of 5-5. As a fullback replaced Riggins J. C. Hixon, who had left after the last season of the university. As a starter Riggins erlief then a space total profit of 866 yards and reached the Jayhawks a score of 9-2, which was the first team in the Big Eight Conference in conjunction with the Oklahoma Sooners. Therefore, the Jayhawks were after the end of the season right at the Orange Bowl participate. There, Kansas met at the Penn State Nittany Lions and was defeated by 15-14. In the next season, the Jayhawks won only one out of ten and thus missed the new collection in a Bowl final. Riggins erlief with a space gain of 662 yards a little less than the previous season, but was still chosen for his achievements in the Eight Conference first- team All- Big. His performances from the two previous years he was in his last season on offer again, so he latched on to a room gain of 1131 yards. This allowed the Jayhawks to win at least five of eleven games and Riggins was re-elected to the First All - Conference team.
Finally, he led the Jayhawks in all of its three years in erlaufenen yards and passed with a total space erlaufenen total profit of 2659 yards even the Jayhawks Gale Sayers legend. For his achievements at the University he was admitted on 13 October 2007 before the Jayhawks game against the Baylor Bears, in the Kansas University Ring of Honor.
New York Jets
John Riggins in 1971 selected by the New York Jets in the first round in sixth place in the NFL Draft. He had a very successful rookie season, during which he led his team in both the running and in the endeavor. In the second year of his career, in a game against the New England Patriots on October 15, 1972 he attained his teammate Emerson Boozer accumulated 318 yards ( 168 Riggins and Boozer 150) extra space on the floor. Thus, the two the only running back tandem in NFL history that have ever run for 150 yards in a game space gain. In the same year, it would be almost managed to beat the Jets franchise record for erlaufenen space gain. At the end he lacked with 944 yards only 4 yards to the record ( 948 ), at that time held by Matt Snell.
Three years later, in 1975, he succeeded then but to surpass this record, and he became the first Jets player who could run space gain in a season for more than 1,000 yards (1005 ). At the end of this season, which was to be his last as a player the Jets, he was elected as the first and only time to the Pro Bowl.
After the 1975 season he became a free agent and the Washington Redskins joined them. He received a four-year contract for 1.5 million U.S. dollars. Compared to his annual salary of $ 75,000 in the last year of his contract with the Jets, this was a significant increase.
For the Redskins, he had a somewhat rocky start. In the first year, 1976, he was used almost exclusively in situations where the target was only a short space gain. And in the second year, 1977, he was almost completely out with a knee injury. However, he succeeded in the two subsequent years (1978 and 1979 ), to increase his power: He latched on more than 1,000 yards in each space gain and thus contributed significantly to the offense the Redskins at.
After the season 1979 Riggins wanted to renegotiate his contract with different terms, what the Redskins team management refused. Then Riggins left the training camp, after which the Redskins reported him as " Retired " to the NFL, which meant that he could not join any other team this season. The result was that he missed the entire 1980 season.
In 1981, Joe Gibbs, the new head coach of the Redskins, and he could Riggins convince them that he should play for Washington again. Eleven months after leaving the training camp, he returned with a new contract back to the Redskins. Media representatives he met with the words:
" I'm bored, I'm broke, and I'm back" Translation: "I 'm bored, I'm broke and I 'm back "
In the following season of 1981, he did not make it though for 1000 yards to run extra space, but he scored 13 touchdowns. The 1982 season was reduced by a player strike from 16 to 9 games and expands the playoffs from 12 to 16 teams. Riggins played an average season and posted 553 yards extra space on the floor. The Redskins reached the play-offs, where Riggins his line improved by leaps and bounds and in three games to the Super Bowl XVII for 444 yards ran space gain. Along the way, the Detroit Lions, Minnesota Vikings and Dallas Cowboys were beaten. During the Super Bowl Riggins once again showed an excellent performance. He reached 166 yards space gain at 38 running attempts. This performance helped the Washington Redskins to beat the Miami Dolphins with 27:17, and Riggins was due to its performance for MVP of the Super Bowl, so most valuable player of the game selected.
A move during the Super Bowl may well be called Riggins ' most famous action of his entire career: There were ten minutes left to play. The Redskins were in a " fourth down " situation and had to overcome a few inches to get a new first attempt. Riggins was sent to the board with a plan to achieve just a few yards extra space in order to achieve the "First Down." Riggens received the ball from the quarterback and managed to avoid a tackle by a defender the Dolphins. Instead of a few yards, which was supposed to bring the play, he ran 43 yards and scored a touchdown. This turn was chosen by the Redskins fans to " Redskins " Greatest Moment " 2007. In addition, this move in advance of Super Bowl XLVI was elected eight best move of Super Bowl history by the NFL Network. Riggins erlief 610 yards in the playoffs (including the Super Bowl), which is an NFL playoff record.
1983 was another very successful year for Riggins. He latched on to a space gain of 1,347 yards and 24 touchdowns, giving a then- record showed. The Redskins once again reached the Super Bowl, but lost time against the Los Angeles Raiders (now Oakland Raiders ) with 9:38. A small oddity is the fact that Riggins in the season scored 144 points this season and this was the second- most points by a player. First place in this season was the kicker of the Redskins Mark Moseley, so a teammate of Riggins. That was the first time since the 1951 season that two teammates had achieved the league and the most second most points in a season.
1984 was a very successful season for Riggins, in which he ran for over 1000 yards again gain of space, even though he was suffering from back problems again. During the 1985 season, he was replaced by George Rogers and finished after his career.
In 1990 he was inducted into the Washington Redskins Ring of Fame, which is the internal team Hall of Fame Redskins. He was taken on the same day as quarterback Joe Theismann. As Riggins ' name was called, he ran in full gear (helmet, pads, jersey, etc.) into the field, and then the fans greeted him with thunderous applause.
In 1992 he was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.