Dalton Hilliard – Greater New Orleans Sports Hall of Fame
New Orleans Saints
Dalton Hilliard played eight seasons as a running back with the New Orleans Saints (1986-93) after a standout career at LSU. Despite battling injuries for much of his career, he turned in a Pro Bowl season in 1989 when he rushed for 1,262 yards and a Saints organization record 18 touchdowns. He added 52 receptions for 514 yards.
The 5-8, 195-pounder completed his career with 4,164 rushing yards and 39 rushing touchdowns as well as 2,233 receiving yards and another 14 scores. At the time of his retirement, he was highly ranked in many Saints career categories including being at the top in total touchdowns (53) and rushing TDs as well as second in rushing yards, total yards (6,397) and points scored (300).
“There was a lot of doubt about whether I could play at that level [the NFL],” Hilliard said. “I didn’t have any doubts personally, but a lot of people didn’t think I would make it. That sort of motivated me.”
“I would put Dalton in the open field with anybody in the league,” former Saints guard Jim Dombrowski said in 1989, “and I guarantee you Dalton’s going to be running away and the other guy is going to be on the ground.”
At LSU (1982-85), Hilliard rushed for 44 touchdowns, which remained fifth all-time in the SEC as of 2013. He was selected in the second round (31st overall) of the 1986 NFL Draft by the Saints.
Hilliard was born January 21, 1964 in Patterson, La. He was inducted into the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame in 1997 and the New Orleans Saints Hall of Fame in 1998.