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Jan Stenerud (born November 26, 1942) is a Norwegianmarker former Professional Football player for the American Football League's Kansas City Chiefs (1967-1969), and the NFL's Chiefs (1970-1979), Green Bay Packers (1980-1983), and Minnesota Vikings (1984-1985). Stenerud was one of the first professional football players to be used as a dedicated kicker, due to his excellent "sharpshooting" ball-kicking performance. He was one of the first placekickers to use the "soccer style", a technique the Hungarian-born Pete Gogolak had recently introduced in the AFL. Stenerud came to the United States on a ski jumping scholarship and had never played football. While attending Montana State Universitymarker in Bozeman, Montanamarker, he joined the football team and in 1965 kicked a 59-yard field goal, then a college football record, against the rival Montana Grizzlies.

During his 3 years in the AFL, Stenerud hit 70% of his field goals, compared with a 53% average for the other kickers in the AFL and NFL.

After the 1969 season, Stenerud won Super Bowl IV with the Chiefs when they defeated the Minnesota Vikings 23-7. In that game, Stenerud kicked three field goals, scoring the first 9 points of the game for his team. His first, a 48-yarder, would remain the longest field goal in a Super Bowl until January 1994, when the record was broken by the Buffalo Bills kicker Steve Christie in Super Bowl XXVIII.

But Stenerud wasn't infallible. He missed two field goals and had another kick blocked on Christmas Day, 1971 in an AFC divisional playoff game against the Miami Dolphins. The Dolphins won the game 27-24 in double overtime on a 37-yard field goal by Garo Yepremian. The game is the longest in NFL history at 82 minutes, 40 seconds of playing time, and was also the final football game in Kansas City Municipal Stadiummarker.



Stenerud retired after the 1985 season, after 19 years (3 AFL, 16 NFL). In his career, he converted 373 out of 558 field goals (67 percent) and 580 out of 601 extra points (97%). Overall, Stenerud scored a total of 1,699 points. At the time of his retirement, he was the longest tenured (19 years) Professional Football player to have played in the AFL. The last former AFL player in Professional Football was Charlie Joiner (Houston Oilers, 1969), who retired from the San Diego Chargers after the 1986 season.

Enshrined in 1991, Stenerud, along with George Blanda and Lou Groza is one of only three kickers in the Pro Football Hall of Famemarker, and he is the only one of those three who did not play another position (Blanda played Quarterback, Lou Groza played Offensive Tackle). The Chiefs have retired jersey number 3 in his honor. In 1994, he was selected on NFL's 75th Anniversary Team

In recent years Stenerud has been involved in a Kansas City firm that is involved in designing stadiums and sports arenas. He also worked as a commentator for Scandinavian TV channel TV3's Super Bowl Sunday coverage in the 1990s, and still maintains strong ties with his native Norway. The street where he grew up, in the municipality Fet, was renamed in his honor.

References

  • http://www.missoulian.com/specials/UM-MSU100/G64-70.html


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