AFC West: Tom Dempsey
After watching Oakland’s Sebastian Janikowski tie the NFL record with a 63-yard field goal in Denver on Monday night, Broncos’ strong-legged kicker Matt Prater wants to take a shot at the record himself.
Meanwhile, Tom Dempsey, who now shares the record with Jason Elam and Janikowski, plans to write Janikowski a letter of congratulations.
NFL.com is reporting Oakland rookie quarterback Terrelle Pryor will have his appeal of his five-game suspension heard Thursday. He is trying to get the suspension erased or reduced. It is already the second week of the suspension.
Elam admits that he thinks the impressive NFL record he has shared with Tom Dempsey for the past 13 years could be given the boot every week. Janikowski is the one of the most expected contenders. When the Oakland Raiders approached mid-field at the end of the first half Monday night of an eventual 23-20 win, Elam buckled in for history.
“I was excited,” Elam said by phone Tuesday. “I don’t watch football to see 21-yard field goals. [Monday] was my type of game.”
When Janikowski’s 63-yard field goal barely fell over the cross bar, tying him with Dempsey and Elam for the NFL record, Elam was thrilled to see another placekicker achieve greatness.
“I have such an appreciation for Sebastian as a kicker,” Elam said. “He has such a strong leg, He’s fun to watch. It was a great kick. I just wish it didn’t come against my Broncos.”
Elam thinks a new record will be established, perhaps soon. He thinks every kicker in the NFL is capable of making a 64-yard plus kick, but he counts Janikowski and Denver’s Matt Prater as among the top candidates to establish a new record. Like Janikowski's 63-yarder, Elam’s was done in Denver. It came at the end of the first half.
“His situation was perfect,” Elam said. “I was watching, thinking he could do it.”
Oakland leads 16-3.
It barely made it but the man they call Seabass is in the record books. He tied Denver’s Jason Elam (he did it in the old Mile High Stadium) and New Orleans’ Tom Dempsey.
This is a horribly played game folks, but we just saw history.
Posted by ESPN.com's Bill Williamson
Denver Broncos kicker Matt Prater will be named AFC Special teams player of the week, the Broncos said in a release.
Prater made all three of his field goal attempts Sunday in a 16-13 win over Tampa Bay. One of his field goals was from 55 yards. It easily cleared the cross bar. Prater also recorded four touchbacks on five kickoffs Sunday.
Prater has kicked four field goals of 50 yards or more this season. He said Sunday that his coaches told him he will attempt to break the all-time field goal record of 63 yards this season. The record is shared by Jason Elam and Tom Dempsey.
Prater, of course, replaced Elam in Denver this season. Elam was a surprise departure from Denver after 15 years. He signed with Atlanta.
Denver signed Prater late last season and developed him in the offseason. Prater came into the season. His only previous NFL experience was in Atlanta last year and he made just one of four field goal attempts. Prater credits that experience of helping him now.
"A lot of young kickers struggle early and I had my struggles last year," Prater said. "I feel very comfortable out there now."
And he's being rewarded for it.