NFL Analysis

5/20/24

9 min read

Ranking The NFL's 25 Fastest Players

Seattle Seahawks wide receiver DK Metcalf (14) carries the ball after a catch against the Pittsburgh Steelers during the second half at Lumen Field. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

The NFL is faster than ever, with more teams chasing speed every offseason. But who is the NFL’s fastest player going into the 2024 season? 

Here are the top 25 fastest players using a combination of timed speed via the NFL’s Next Gen Stats and 40-yard dash times:

NFL's 25 Fastest Players

25. Terry McLaurin, WR, Washington Commanders 

Terry McLaurin was known for his speed coming out of Ohio State, running a 4.35-second 40-yard dash at the 2019 NFL Combine. While he hasn’t always had a quarterback to take advantage of his speed, that shouldn’t be the case any longer in Washington with Jayden Daniels in the mix.


24. Jamel Dean, CB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Jamel Dean's speed is displayed every snap as an outside cornerback, and it's not hard to see. At the 2019 combine, he ran an incredible 4.30 40-yard dash at 206 pounds, among the fastest ever for a player heavier than 200 pounds.


23. Eric Stokes, CB, Green Bay Packers

Eric Stokes has played just 12 games in the past two seasons after dealing with injuries, but his speed is the reason why he was a first-round pick. He ran a 4.31 40-yard dash at Georgia's Pro Day in 2021, and his overall athleticism is overwhelming. 

Here is to hoping that he can get healthy and get back on the field in 2024.


22. Rondale Moore, WR, Atlanta Falcons

Rondale Moore was traded to the Atlanta Falcons this offseason after a somewhat disappointing start to his career with the Cardinals, but his speed and quickness will allow him to get even more chances. 

Moore ran a 4.32 40-yard dash at Purdue's Pro Day in 2021 and has routinely been one of the league’s quickest players with the ball in his hands.


21. Ja’Marr Chase, WR, Cincinnati Bengals 

When you think of speed at wide receiver, you might not think of Ja’Marr Chase. But you should. 

He is one of the league’s fastest receivers, as he posted multiple times of 21.5 mph or faster this season as a ball carrier. Chase is a complete receiver, and his incredible athleticism makes him such a fantastic weapon. It's one reason he has 29 TDs in 45 NFL games.


20. Denzel Ward, CB, Cleveland Browns 

There aren’t many cornerbacks in the league faster than Denzel Ward. At the 2018 NFL Combine, he ran a 4.32 40-yard dash, and his quickness is even more impressive. 


19. Curtis Samuel, WR, Buffalo Bills

Not many players are faster with the ball in their hands than Curtis Samuel. The 2017 draft pick ran a blazing 4.31 40-yard dash out of Ohio State at 196 pounds. 

He hasn’t always been in a situation where a team can utilize his speed, but that could change in 2024 now that he is with Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills. 


18. Jonathan Taylor, RB, Indianapolis Colts

Jonathan Taylor has been hampered by leg and back injuries during the last two seasons, which has deprived us of seeing one of the most explosive backs in the league. 

During the 2021 season, Taylor had three runs where his top speed hit at least 21.8 mph. He even hit 22.1 mph on a 67-yard touchdown against the Patriots, the fastest in the NFL that year. 


17. Derrick Henry, RB, Baltimore Ravens

Derrick Henry is getting older and isn’t quite as fast as he used to be, but no one is catching him from behind in the open field. Henry had a run in the 2023 season where his max speed topped out at 21.68 mph, the eighth-fastest among all ball carriers. 

Considering he’s running that speed at 250 pounds, it makes it even more impressive.

>> READ MORE: Henry Is Perfect Fit With Ravens


16. Breece Hall, RB, New York Jets

Breece Hall didn't look quite as explosive in 2023 when he was recovering from a torn ACL, but we know he is an exceptional athlete. 

During his rookie season in 2022, he recorded a top-end speed of 21.87 mph on a 62-yard touchdown run, the third-fastest in the NFL that season.


15. Christian Watson, WR, Green Bay Packers

It’s a shame that hamstring injuries have robbed Christian Watson of so much time during his first two years. There aren’t many players with his size and long-speed. 

During the 2022 season, Watson hit 21.72 mph on a 46-yard rushing touchdown against the Bears. Who knows how much the hamstring injuries have zapped his speed, but he is still a threat whenever he has the ball in his hands.


14. Kenneth Walker, RB, Seattle Seahawks

We know Kenneth Walker has elite timed speed after running a 4.38 40-yard dash at the 2022 combine. It's also not surprising that he posted one of the fastest mph times during the 2023 season (21.56 mph). 

Walker is a home-run hitter at running back and one of the NFL’s most dynamic players.


13. Nate Wiggins, CB, Baltimore Ravens 

If it weren’t for Xavier Worthy, Nate Wiggins would have gotten much more attention at this year’s combine. The former Clemson cornerback ran a 4.28 40-yard dash, the second-best time in the class. He’ll instantly be one of the fastest cornerbacks in the league and landed in an ideal situation in Baltimore. 


12. Parris Campbell, WR, Philadelphia Eagles 

Parris Campbell has missed a lot of time during the last several seasons due to injuries, but one of the reasons teams continue to give him chances is his speed. 

Campbell hit 22.11 mph on a 26-yard run during the 2022 season, which was the fastest in the NFL. Combine that with his 4.31 40-yard dash, and it's not hard to see why he should be on the list.


11. Jaylen Waddle, WR, Miami Dolphins

Jaylen Waddle never ran at the 2021 combine after suffering a leg injury during his final season at Alabama. But it doesn’t take a football savant to know he is fast. 

Waddle was clocked at 21.8 mph during his rookie season on a 54-yard reception against the Panthers. He might not be as fast as teammate Tyreek Hill, but it's closer than you think.


10. Tyquan Thornton, WR, New England Patriots

The New England Patriots selected Tyquan Thornton in the second round of the 2022 NFL Draft, and while that hasn't worked out yet, there is no doubting his speed. 

Thornton ran a blazing 4.28 40-yard dash at 6-foot-2, 181 pounds. That is 16 pounds heavier than Xavier Worthy, who we will see later on this list. Thornton is a one-speed receiver who has yet to succeed in the league, but his one speed is outstanding.


9. riq Woolen, CB, Seattle Seahawks

There are only a handful of players who weigh more than 205 pounds and run a sub 4.35 40-yard dash. But the Seattle Seahawks have multiple of them, as they prioritize athleticism over everything. 

Riq Woolen is a rare physical specimen, running a 4.26 40-yard dash at 6-foot-4, 205 pounds. He has crazy size, length and long speed, which is needed to be a great cornerback.


8. Raheem Mostert, RB, Miami Dolphins

Raheem Mostert is one of the NFL’s fastest running backs. Strangely enough, he isn’t even the fastest on his team. Mostert hit 21.62 mph on a 43-yard touchdown against the Patriots last season, and he hasn't lost any speed in his early 30s. 


7. DJ Turner, CB, Cincinnati Bengals

There aren’t many defensive players listed here, but DJ Turner deserves it. He ran the fastest 40-yard dash time at the 2023 NFL Combine, posting a 4.26. 

That is tied for the third-fastest by any defensive player since 1999. Turner was solid as a rookie for the Cincinnati Bengals and should receive even more work in Year 2. 


6. Kavontae Turpin, WR, Dallas Cowboys

Kavontae Turpin is small (5-foot-9, 153 pounds) but one of the league’s most dynamic players with the ball in his hands. At his pro day in 2022, Turpin ran a 4.31 40-yard dash, but that doesn't even tell the whole story. 

During the 2023 season, Turpin hit 21.91 mph on a reverse, the fifth-fastest recorded time last season.


5. Chase Brown, RB, Cincinnati Bengals

Chase Brown burst onto the scene late last season after a swing pass 54 yards for a touchdown. On that reception, Brown hit 22.05 mph, the second-fastest in the NFL. He is a supreme athlete who should only get more work in Cincinnati this year.


4. De’Von Achane, RB, Miami Dolphins

De’Von Achane is the league’s most explosive running back right now, and it’s not that close. Last year, Achane had multiple runs of 21.75 mph or faster on top of his 4.32 speed. Once he sees an opening, he is gone.


3. DK Metcalf, WR, Seattle Seahawks 

There are a lot of athletic freaks on this list, but none are as impressive as DK Metcalf. During the 2019 combine, Metcalf ran a 4.33 40-yard dash at 228 pounds. 

His combination of size and speed makes him one of the most unique players in the NFL. It's also worth noting that he posted the fastest clocked speed during the 2023 season at 22.23 mph on a 73-yard touchdown reception from Geno Smith.


2. Tyreek Hill, WR, Miami Dolphins

There might not be a player who plays faster than Tyreek Hill. While we never saw him run a 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine, he hit a max speed of 22.01 mph during the 2023 season. 

His long speed, quickness and acceleration make him one of the most dynamic receivers in NFL history. 


1. Xavier Worthy, WR, Kansas City Chiefs

Xavier Worthy broke the 40-yard dash record at this year’s combine, running a 4.21. He’ll instantly be the fastest player in the league and should provide plenty of big plays for an offense that lacked them, at times, last season.


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