Kickers and punters, AFC West style
Posted by ESPN.com's Bill Williamson
The kicking specialist is getting some love on the NFL Blog Network Tuesday.
After the recent Pro Football Hall Of Fame voting, there remains just one player who was strictly a kicker among the inductees. We're appreciating some of the best kickers and punters in the history of AFC West teams. (That Hall Of Fame kicker, by the way, is from this division.) We are highlighting one kicking specialist per team.
|Doug Pensinger/Getty Images|
|Jason Elam shares the NFL record for the longest field goal in history.|
Denver: Jason Elam, kicker
The skinny: It was a shock to see Elam leave Denver for Atlanta through free agency last season. He was an institution in the Rocky Mountains and he is still effective after 16 NFL seasons. Even though Elam is no longer a Bronco, he is part for the team's lore. He shares the NFL record for the longest field goal in history (63 yards). He was cold-blooded with the game on the line. In his final season in Denver, Elam won four of the team's seven games in the final seconds.
Kansas City: Jan Stenerud, kicker
The skinny: Stenerud is the only kicking specialist in the Hall of Fame. He spent the first 13 of his 19-season NFL career with the Chiefs. He was a key member of the team's Super Bowl winning team. An excellent athlete, the Norwegian Stenerud was known for both his accuracy and strong leg. He's a kicking pioneer and he may be lonely in the Hall of Fame for a while.
Oakland: Ray Guy, punter
The skinny: He is one of the main reasons why the kicking and punting Hall of Fame was formed. It may be the last Hall of Fame Guy ever gets voted into. He has been a finalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame in the past, but his candidacy has stalled some. Many consider Guy the best punter of all time.
San Diego: Mike Scifres, punter
The skinny: The Chargers' current punter is vastly underrated. The Chargers think he is one of the best punters to play in the NFL in several years. He is very accurate and he put himself in the spotlight last month. A master of placing the ball inside opponents' 20-yard line, Scifres pinned all six of his punts against the Colts inside the 20-yard line in the Chargers' win in the wild-card game. It was the first time in the history of the postseason that had happened. Many in the San Diego organization said Scifres' effort was the key to the win.