AFC South: Morten Andersen

Morten AndersenAndy Lyons/Getty Images
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This is one of three nominations for the most memorable play in team history. In the next two days we'll feature: Mark Brunell's touchdown pass to Jimmy Smith to clinch the 1996 AFC Divisional playoff game over the Broncos; and David Garrard's fourth-down scramble to set up Josh Scobee's game-winning field goal in the 2007 AFC Wildcard game. Please vote for your choice as the Jaguars' most memorable play.

Score: Jaguars 19, Falcons 17
Date: Dec. 22, 1996 Site: Jacksonville Municipal Stadium

Four consecutive victories -- all by seven or fewer points -- put the Jaguars on the cusp of their first playoff appearance in just the franchise's second season. All they needed to do was beat the 3-12 Falcons at home.


Which is the most memorable play in Jaguars' history?


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It looked like it would happen too. The Jaguars led 16-3 midway through the third quarter, thanks to Brunell's touchdown run and Mike Hollis' three field goals . But the Falcons sandwiched touchdowns around another Hollis field goal and cut the Jaguars' lead to 19-17.

Atlanta then put together what should have been a game-winning drive and set up kicker Morten Andersen with a short 30-yard field goal attempt in the final seconds. Anderson had made 59 consecutive field goals from 30 yards or closer dating back to 1989, so the Jaguars were going to be cleaning out their lockers the next day.

But the left-footed Andersen slipped when he planted his right foot, and the ball squirted left of the upright. The remaining Jaguars fans went crazy, but on the home team sideline there was a moment of disbelief.

"It almost renders me speechless," coach Tom Coughlin said after the game. "We're in the playoffs."

And boy did they make the most of that early Christmas present.

The Jaguars went to Buffalo the following week and upset the Bills in a wild-card game and then produced what is arguably the greatest victory in franchise history. The Jaguars were 14-point underdogs but upset the top-seeded Denver Broncos at Mile High Stadium.

Suddenly, they were in the AFC Championship Game.

It wouldn't have been possible without Andersen's shocking miss. To this day, Andersen still holds a place of reverence among Jaguars fans.

Surprisingly, Andersen has embraced his piece of franchise history. He served as a surprise presenter at the Florida Sports Awards show that was held in Jacksonville the summer of 1997. Andersen even pretended to slip as he was announced and made his way on stage.

The award he presented: The Jaguars' MVP, of course.

INDIANAPOLIS -- Former Indianapolis Colts coach Tony Dungy and receiver Marvin Harrison are a step away from being elected into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Dungy and Harrison are two of the 15 finalists for this year's Hall of Fame class.

The 46-person Hall of Fame panel will vote for the 2014 class on Feb. 1.

Dungy, the winningest coach in Colts history, won five division titles, reached the AFC Championship Game twice and won a Super Bowl while coaching the team from 2002-08.

Harrison was second in league history in receptions when he retired in 2008. He had eight straight 1,000-yard receiving seasons. He ended his career with 1,102 receptions for 14,580 yards and 128 touchdowns.

The Colts have 12 individuals in the Hall of Fame.

Here's a list of the 13 of other finalists for the Hall of Fame: Kicker Morten Andersen, running back Jerome Bettis, linebacker Derrick Brooks, receiver Tim Brown, owner Edward DeBartolo, Jr., linebacker Kevin Greene, punter Ray Guy, defensive end Charles Haley, defensive end Claude Humphrey, offensive tackle Walter Jones, safety John Lynch, receiver Andre Reed, guard Will Shields, defensive end Michael Strahan and cornerback Aeneas Williams.

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October, 10, 2013