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The 100th Sack16x9

Calais Campbell's journey to 100 career sacks was 16 seasons in the making. He is only the 42nd player in recorded NFL history to reach the century mark. He is one of six active players in the league to accomplish the feat. To celebrate Campbell reaching and surpassing 100 career sacks, goes back in time with Campbell as he reminisces on some of the most impactful moments of his career.

In the fifth and final story of Campbell's journey to 100 career sacks, he takes readers inside the moment that was 15 years in the making.

For access to all of the celebratory content, visit the Calais Campbell Sack History landing page.

With Sam Howell in his sights, Campbell was left silently pleading with the Washington quarterback. 

"Don't throw the ball away," Campbell thought as he slung the offensive lineman in front of him to the ground. "Please don't throw the ball away. Please hold on to it. Go down." 

Campbell had been searching for sack No. 100 well before he decided to sign with Atlanta this offseason. He recorded sack No. 99 with Baltimore in Nov. 2022. But in the nine games he had played since, it never came. So, when that 10th game arrived with the Commanders traveling to Atlanta, Campbell had been chasing that singular sack for a while, with the feat just a fingertip out of reach at times.


"It was just a lot of build up, over and over again," Campbell said. "But I knew it was just a matter of time. It was going to happen. As long as I was healthy enough to keep playing football, it was going to happen."

And it did happen as Campbell wrapped his long arms around Howell's legs, dropping him to the field and finally – finally – earning sack No. 100.

"I tell you," Campbell said, "it felt so good."


Campbell is only the 42nd player in NFL history to reach 100 career sacks since 1982 (when sacks became an official statistic). As of Oct. 27, 2023, he is at 101, having added a sack against Baker Mayfield in the Falcons' Week 7 win in Tampa. Campbell is one of only six active players who have surpassed the triple-digit sacks mark in their career, and the first to do so since Aaron Donald reached the feat last year. Unofficially, there are 64 players with over 100 sacks recorded since 1960.

It's a huge accomplishment, and shouldn't be overlooked.

"First, we're thinking, 'Alright, we've got to get off the field,'" defensive coordinator Ryan Nielsen remembers of the moment Campbell notched No. 100. "Then, all of a sudden it was like, 'You know what? This is something that you're not going to be around very much.' You have to kind of take yourself out of the game and appreciate the body of work in that particular moment, just (feeling) elation for Calais, being so happy for him.

"That's such a great accomplishment, and the guy's a Hall of Famer. You're not going to be around that many Hall of Famers in your career. You want to be, but that just doesn't happen."

Relive the moment when Atlanta Falcons defensive lineman Calais Campbell completed his 100th career sack against the Washington Commanders during Week 6.

For Campbell, sack No. 100 was a long-time coming. It was 15 years in the making. It was all the big sacks taking center stage. It was the effort plays accumulating for him, too. But it was also the unseen grind to create longevity in a league that doesn't often see it.

In the end, no one can take any of that away from Campbell.

"This is never going anywhere," he said. "This is forever."

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