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jan stenerud, american football


Stenerud is the only pure kicker in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, largely because he changed the face of kicking in professional football. He was one of the first soccer-style kickers in the league and its most successful early practitioner. He was the first to really «boom» kicks through the end zone, prompting the NFL to move the kickoff point back 5 yards in 1974.

He was selected as a member of the NFL´s 75th Anniversary all-time team. He played 19 NFL seasons. He is the NFL´s all-time leader with 373 field goals and is ssecond on the all-time scoring list with 1,699 points. Stenerud led the league in field goals three times, kicked five field goals in a game on three different occassions and once had a string of 16 consecutive games in which he kicked a field goal in the 1969 and ´70 seasons.

Stenerud opened the scoring in Super Bowl IV with a 48-yarder in the first quarter and his three first-half field goals gave the Chiefs a 9-0 lead early in the game.

The most accurate field goal kicker in team history (80.8 percent), Stenerud scored in a team-record 45 straight games while leading the Packers in points three years in a row from 1981 through 1983. Stenerud set an NFL record (since broken) in 1981 when he connected on 22 of 24 field goals (91.7 percent).

A third-round draft choice of the Chiefs in 1966, Stenerud played 13 years in Kansas City before coming to Green Bay. Stenerud closed out his playing days with the Vikings (1984-85).

Montana State football coach Jim Swooney could not have known a skier from Norway, whom he discouraged from playing football, would eventually receive the National Football League´s highest honor.

But that´s exactly what happened when Jan Stenerud became the sixth Chief inducted to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in July 1991.

Jan Stenerud´s childhood home in Fetsund. The muncipial named a road, Jan Steneruds vei, this happens usely after a person is dead.

Stenerud is considered the finest placekicker in pro football history and is distinguished as the only pure kicker enshrined at the Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. Statistics from his 19-year career placed him near the top of every NFL kicking category.

Only George Blanda (340) and Jim Marshall (282) played in more regular-season NFL games than Stenerud´s 263. He is ranked third behind Blanda and Lou Groza in point-after-touchdown NFL record. Seventeen of his field goals were from 50 yards or more, second only to former Chiefs kicker Nick Lowery. Stenerud had seven 100-point seasons, also second behind Lowery.

Eight records are owned or shared by Stenerud, including most consecutive games played (186), most career PATs and field goals attempted (409, 436), most field goals in a season (44), and most field goal attempts in a game (7). He played in six postseason All-Star games, including four NFL Pro Bowl appearances. His contributions to the Chiefs Super Bowl-winning team were vital. He capped the championship season with a 48-yard field goal, the longest in Super Bowl history, against the Vikings in Super Bowl IV.

Stenerud was among the first soccer-style kickers to find success in the NFL. Today, nearly all professional kickers use the technique he popularized. Stenerud´s spirit of innovation made him the dominant kicker in professional football. That same spirit bolstered further development of the sidewinding approach. He designed a kicking tee which facilitated the growth of the technique by maximizing the effectiveness of soccer-style kickers.

He is currently director of business development at Howard Needles Tammen & Bergendoff, a Kansas City-based architectural firm that specializes in stadium design. In his 13 years with the Chiefs and 19 years in professional football, Jan Stenerud revolutionized placekicking. He has earned his spot in NFL and Chiefs history.

See also the U.S.A.´s most respected, innovative and successful college football coach of all time.