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 Jan Stenerud

Jan Stenerud was born in Fetsund, and the street where he grew up, was renamed in his honor. Jan Stenerud is a 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).

Jan Stenerud came to the United States on a ski jumping scholarship to attend Montana State University in Bozeman, Montana. Late in his sophomore year, Stenerud was spotted kicking a football by the college´s baseball coach who relayed the news of his abilities to the football coach. He joined the football team and in 1965 kicked a 59-yard field goal, then a college football record, against the rival Montana Grizzlies.

Stenerud was one of the first professional football players to be used as a dedicated kicker, because of 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. 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.

Stenerud 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 Stadium. Stenerud´s name in the Chiefs´ ring of honor at Arrowhead Stadium.

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 Fame, 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 to the NFL´s 75th Anniversary Team.

More info about Jan Stenerud at Wikipedia.



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