Top 10 Greatest Clutch Field Goal Kicks in NFL HistoryBeing a kicker can be the best of both worlds. You don't get much attention, which allows you to be yourself unless you're called upon to make a field goal kick in a crucial situation. These are the greatest kicks in NFL history.
The 2001 AFC Divisional game between the Patriots and Raiders is best remembered for the Tuck Rule, which denied the Raiders the fumble recovery. But the Patriots still trailed 13-10 and were driving down the field in a snowy blizzard at Foxborough. With the ball at the 28-yard line, Viniatieri was called upon to kick a 45-yard attempt, which under normal conditions was doable. Yet, somehow, he was able to make the kick to tie the game and force overtime. Then, he would seal the Patriots' win with a 23-yard field goal.
With Baltimore trailing 17-16 to the Lions in Detroit, Tucker attempted to break an NFL-record with a 66-yard field goal attempt to win the game. Although the ball hit the cross bar, it sailed over the line to complete the field goal and give Tucker the new record.
Born with no toes on his right foot and no fingers on his right hand, Tom Dempsey wore a flat-front kicking shoe with no toe box aside. That shoe would play a role in a 1970 game against the Lions. Trailing 17-16 with two seconds left, Dempsey was able to make a then-NFL record 63-yard field goal to beat the Lions (although the goal posts were closer to the goal line back in those days). Dempsey's record was tied on four occasions since then before being bested by Justin Tucker.
The Patriots led 17-3 against the heavily favored Rams in Super Bowl 36 only to let St. Louis back to tie the game. But after Tom Brady drove the Pats down to the 31-yard line, it set the stage for Adam Vinatieri in an attempt to win the Super Bowl with a 48-yard attempt. Viniatieri wasted no time kicking the ball through the uprights just as the clock expired and the Patriots' dynasty began that night.
Super Bowl 5 is regarded as the worst Super Bowl game of all-time because of the turnovers and costly errors on both sides. But, it did have a memorable finish. With the score tied at 13, the Colts set up a 32-yard field attempt by rookie kicker Jim O'Brien. Having missed an extra point earlier in the game, O'Brien was able to kick the ball through the uprights to hand the Colts their first Super Bowl victory. This marked the first time in Super Bowl history a kicker decided the outcome of the game.
Lawrence Tynes had two opportunities to win the 2007 NFC Championship for the Giants in regulation against the Green Bay Packers in Lambeau Field. In frigid conditions, he failed to make both kicks and the game went into overtime. After the Giants intercepted a Brett Favre pass, Tynes returned to the field for another try. The third time was the charm as Tynes made a 47-yard field goal attempt to clinch the game.
Before the Giants played the Colts in the 1958 NFL Championship, they had to get there. With no overtime in regular season games, the Giants the Browns by trailed one game in the Eastern Conference division of the NFL. The score was tied at 10, which the Browns wanted to clinch the division and play for the championship. Adding more drama, the future CBS broadcaster Pat Summerall stepped on the field to attempt a 49-yard field goal in swirling winds. Amazingly, Summerall converted the field goal and gave the Giants the win just to force a tiebreaker game against the Browns, which they won.
In perhaps the most underrated Super Bowl of all-time, Vinatieri had missed one field goal and had another blocked early in the first half. But with the score tied at 29, the Patriots drove down to set him up for a 41-yard attempt. This time, he converted to hand the Patriots their second Super Bowl title in three years.
The 1958 NFL Championship has been regarded as The Greatest Game Ever Played in NFL history because it marked the first ever sudden-death overtime in NFL Championship history. But none of that would've been possible if Steve Myhra didn't make a 20-yard field goal to tie the game and send it into overtime. Interestingly enough, Myhra was a dismal four-of-10 from field goal range that season, which was the reason why in overtime, the Colts elected to go for the touchdown to seal the championship.
In overtime, the Saints were on cusp on clinching their first ever NFC Championship four years after Hurricane Katrina. Garrett Hartley stepped up for a 40-yard field goal, which ironically was the same mark he missed from earlier in the season that would've won the Saints the game. This time, he nailed the kick and gave the Saints the trip to the Super Bowl.
This is the most forgotten clutch game winner. His 42-yarder with no time left not only beat the Giants, not only for the Redskins to maintain their ranking as the best team in the NFC, BUT that field goal broke the NFL record for most consecutive field goals without a miss, that was his 23rd.