Jan Stenerud talked his coach out of running one more play, then, with two seconds left, kicked a 53-yard field goal that gave the Minnesota Vikings a 27-24 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers today.
"I wanted to run one more play before Jan's kick," Coach Les Steckel said. "But Jan said, 'This is good, I can make it from here.' "
Stenerud, 41, rated the kick among the best of the 355 he's made during the last 18 years.
"I can't remember kicking one that far on the last play of the game," he said. "Greg (Coleman, the holder) was grabbing me, so I didn't see where it landed."
"He would have made it from 60 yards," Coleman said. "That one had a good seven yards to spare."
Linebacker Chris Washington set up the kick by bumping receiver Ted Brown with 16 seconds left. "He wasn't going to catch the ball," Washington claimed. "My momentum carried me into him. It was a bad call." The kick, Stenerud's second-longest this season, ended a five-game losing streak and cost Coach John McKay's Buccaneers their ninth road loss in a row.
"We played very poorly," McKay said. "They outplayed us all the way. Good night."