highest-scoring Playoff games

Top 5 Highest-Scoring Playoff Games in NFL History

Sometimes defense can be optional in the NFL and that’s exactly what the case was for the highest-scoring playoff games in league history (non-Super Bowl). While seeing it in the regular season is great, it’s even better when seeing it in the playoffs when the intensity is at an all-time high and there’s no room for error. Five such games have combined for 86 points or more, two that eclipsed 90 points. Before the big Super Bowl takes place, these high-scoring playoff games set the table in a big way.

Top 5 Highest-Scoring Playoff Games in NFL History


5. St. Louis Rams 49, Minnesota Vikings 37; January 16, 2000 (86 Points)

There’s no surprise that a game featuring “The Greatest Show on Turf” is among the highest-scoring playoff games in NFL history. Before winning the Super Bowl almost a month later, the St. Louis Rams beat the Minnesota Vikings 49-37 in the NFC Divisional Round. The Vikings got out to a 17-14 lead at the half before the Rams scored 35 unanswered points to lead 49-17. The Vikings scored 20 unanswered after that but the damage was already done. In this game, Kurt Warner went 27 for 33 with 395 yards and five touchdowns to only one interception. All five touchdowns were to five different players, including Isaac Bruce who went for 133 yards and a score. Add in Marshall Faulk who ran for a touchdown and went for 80 yards through the air with a touchdown.

On the other side, Vikings quarterback Jeff George threw for 423 yards and five touchdowns to only one interception and had two 100-yard receivers in Randy Moss, who had 188 yards and two touchdowns, and Cris Carter, who had 106 yards and a touchdown. The late surge wasn’t enough to dig themselves out of a big hole against this eventual Super Bowl Champions.

4. Jacksonville Jaguars 45, Pittsburgh Steelers 42; January 14, 2018 (87 Points)

In a stunner to many, the Jacksonville Jaguars beat the Pittsburgh Steelers on the road 45-42 in the AFC Divisional Game in 2018. It was widely expected for the Steelers to face the Patriots in the Conference Championship Game but the Jags had other plans. Jacksonville got off to a quick 21-0 on two Leonard Fournette rushing touchdowns in the first quarter and a T.J. Yeldon run in the second. They eventually led 28-7 in the first half before the Steelers started making it a game.

Le’Veon Bell pulled them to within a touchdown on a late fourth-quarter run before the Jaguars Josh Lambo made a 45-yard field goal to pull ahead by 10 late to eventually win it 45-42. The Jaguars countered Ben Roethlisberger‘s amazing 469-yard, 5-touchdown performance with Fournette’s 109 yards and three touchdowns on the ground.

3. Indianapolis Colts 45, Kansas City Chiefs 44; January 4, 2014 (89 Points)

On January 4th, 2014, we saw one of the biggest comebacks in NFL Playoff history. The Kansas City Chiefs were up 38-10 early in the second half before the Indianapolis Colts came roaring back and won 45-44 on an Andrew Luck 64-yard strike to T.Y. Hilton with just over four minutes left in the game.

Despite throwing three interceptions, Luck was able to lock in and throw for 443 yards and four touchdowns. Hilton had an astonishing day for the Colts as he gathered 13 receptions for 224 yards and two touchdowns. That countered an Alex Smith 378-yard, four-touchdown day and Dwayne Bowe‘s eight catches for 150 yards with a touchdown.

2. Philadelphia Eagles 58, Detroit Lions 37; December 30, 1995 (95 Points)

Although the Detroit Lions scored 37 points, this game was long over after the first quarter. The game was tied at seven before the Philadelphia Eagles took half to take a 38-7 lead at half. They weren’t done with the onslaught as they scored another 13 points in the third to lead 51-7. Rodney Pete threw for 270 yards and tossed three touchdowns to three different players. The Eagles also capitalized on seven turnovers by Detroit.

The Lions scored 30 points after it got to a 44-point deficit but that didn’t matter as the Eagles also scored another touchdown in that time to win 58-37. This game might be the second-highest scoring game in playoff history but it was dominated by the Eagles throughout.

1. Arizona Cardinals 51, Green Bay Packers 49 OTJanuary 10, 2010 (96 Points)

A shootout between two legendary quarterbacks made for the highest-scoring playoff game in NFL history. It was one of the best games ever that resulted in a 51-49 Arizona Cardinals victory in OT over the Green Bay Packers. We saw an emerging Aaron Rodgers throw for 423 and four touchdowns (also ran for one) while the veteran Kurt Warner threw for 379 yards and five touchdowns. There were also a combined three 100-yard receivers (2 GB, 1 Ari).

Throughout all the offense, three lost fumbles occurred during this game but none bigger than the one to end the game. Cardinals defensive back Michael Adams came through and strip-sacked Rodgers, allowing linebacker Karlos Dansby to scoop it up and return it for a 17-yard touchdown for the game-winning score in overtime.

Main Image: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

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