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Greatest game by an individual player in NFL history


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#1 Bryan

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Posted 11 September 2013 - 02:25 PM

Simple enough topic...criteria is completely open, with the caveat being you can only choose one game.  No hedging and listing 3 or 4 different games.  Here is my nomination...

 

http://www.youtube.c...h?v=U3kyEFCKfP4

 

Sid Luckman's performance in the 1943 NFL Championship game.

 

15 of 26 for 286 yards passing, 5 TD 0 INT, 8 carries for 64 yards rushing, 2 punt returns for 32 yards, 3 punts for 74 yards, 2 INTs for 39 yards.

 

Some interesting plays in the game footage.  Looks like a bubble screen at the 0:15 mark, and a middle WR screen at the 1:19 mark.  Staple plays for today's spread offenses (especially in college). 

 

 

 



#2 bachslunch

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Posted 11 September 2013 - 02:42 PM

One possibility is Gale Sayers vs. the 49ers on December 12, 1965.

 

Rushing: 9 carries, 113 yards, 4 TDs

Receiving: 2 catches, 89 yards, 1 TD

Punt Returns: 5 returns, 134 yards, 1 TD

 

Total: 336 all-purpose yards, 6 TDs

 

And on a muddy field, no less.



#3 Bob Gill

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Posted 11 September 2013 - 02:59 PM

I have two candidates, both quarterbacks:

 

Sammy Baugh in the 1937 championship game. He passed for 335 yards (or 352, depending on the source) and three TDs, playing on a frozen field in 15-degree weather. There's some footage of this game on You Tube, and I think it's the worst field I've ever seen, Parts of it are ice, and the rest is frozen mud, with jagged edges. Under those conditions, against the other best team in the league, Baugh beat the NFL's single-season record for passing yardage in a single game by at least 30 yards. I think this is probably the best game by any passer, all things considered. Of course, Baugh also played safety, punted, and ran the ball for a decent number of yards, though I can't recall how many at the moment.

 

Otto Graham in the 1950 championship game. In one of the greatest games ever, won on a field goal by Lou Groza with 30 seconds to go (or whatever the time was), Graham passed for 298 yards (with four TDs) and RAN for 99 yards.



#4 Rupert Patrick

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Posted 11 September 2013 - 03:45 PM

Vernon Perry vs. San Diego in the 1979 AFC Divisional Playoffs, four interceptions and he also blocked a FG, returning it 57 yards.  I consider the Oilers beating the Chargers the biggest upset in NFL postseason history.

 

Honorable mention: 

 

Kellen Winslow vs. Miami in the 1981 AFC Divisional Playoffs - 15 receptions and a blocked game winning FG in sweltering heat.  He allegedly lost 15 pounds worth of water weight during the game.

 

Dick Anderson vs Pittsburgh 12/3/73 - four first half interceptions, two returned for TD's, and he nearly had a third pick six but was stopped inside the Pittsburgh five-yard line.



#5 Chrisskreager

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Posted 11 September 2013 - 03:53 PM

Stephone Paige on 12/22/1985- 309 yards on only 8 receptions, an average of 38 yards per catch.



#6 Bernard Brinker

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Posted 11 September 2013 - 06:18 PM

I am going to fudge on the criteria a little and mention two players.  Alex Karras and Roger Brown caved in the middle and dominated a fairly decent Packer offense on Turkey Day 1962.  The conversation for the best team ever always includes the 1962 Packers; Karras and Brown's dismantling was quite a feat.



#7 BD Sullivan

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Posted 11 September 2013 - 07:02 PM

Coming up on the 50th anniversary of Cookie Gilchrist running for 243 yards and five touchdowns against the Jets on 12/8/63.



#8 74_75_78_79_

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Posted 11 September 2013 - 10:47 PM

Norm Willey...17 SACKS in ONE GAME!!

No, not #1 but simply worth a MENTION, that's all. Bob mentioning Sammy's '37 Championship performance I'd have to place on top - scary stuff! IMO he's the best football player ever.

#9 conace21

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Posted 11 September 2013 - 10:50 PM

Art Shell in Super Bowl XI. Pitched a shutout at LT against Jim Marshall.



#10 John Grasso

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Posted 12 September 2013 - 07:36 AM

Rob Bironas - eight field goals in eight attempts on 10/21/07 for Tennessee including the game winner as time expired.



#11 recbball

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Posted 12 September 2013 - 08:29 AM

Ernie Nevers - Thanksgiving, November 28, 1929 vs. Chicago Bears scored 6 touchdowns and kicked 4 extra points helping the cardinals beat the bears 40-6.



#12 JohnH19

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Posted 12 September 2013 - 09:15 AM

Namath 15 of 28 for 496 and 6 TDs in a 44-34 win over the Colts (Unitas 376 yards in his last big game) in Week 2 of the '72 season.



#13 Teo

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Posted 12 September 2013 - 11:20 AM

Many running backs had great games and most of those were wins, but in a losing cause I would chose Walter Payton in a 1983 game at New Orleans. Payton ran for 161 yards and a td, but his two touchdown passes to Willie Gault in the fourth quarter helped send the game to overtime, where the Saints won 34-31.

#14 Bob Gill

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Posted 12 September 2013 - 02:31 PM

Speaking of running backs reminded me of this one, not from the NFL but still notable:

 

On Nov. 19, 1939, the Kenosha Cardinals of the American Football League beat the Louisville Tanks 34-10. Art Buck of Kenosha scored four TDs and kicked the extra point after each one, for a total of 28 points. That's not bad on the face of it, but it gets better when you know how he scored those touchdowns: a 50-yard interception return plus three runs from scrimmage, of 73, 54 and 48 yards. Altogether, that's 225 yards on four scoring plays.



#15 TouchdownTimmy

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Posted 14 September 2013 - 12:35 PM

Ernie Nevers - Thanksgiving, November 28, 1929 vs. Chicago Bears scored 6 touchdowns and kicked 4 extra points helping the cardinals beat the bears 40-6.

Not only that Nevers scored all of his touchdowns rushing which, along with the 40 points, is still a record. The week before he scored all 19 of the Cardinals points which means Nevers scored 59 straight for his team.  



#16 Marble_Eye

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Posted 14 September 2013 - 03:29 PM

If you include non NFL pro games Jim Thorpe scored 38 points in a game against the Buffalo "All-Stars" in a 77-0 Canton Bulldog win detailed in the articles section here and he threw for 2 TD's as well.  Game info can be found in the article about the Canton Bulldogs of 1916.



#17 26554

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Posted 14 September 2013 - 05:05 PM

Art Shell in Super Bowl XI. Pitched a shutout at LT against Jim Marshall.

 

Impressive, but Marshall was like 60 at that point.

 

How about the job Bob Kuechenberg did on Alan Page in SB VIII with a broken arm?



#18 TouchdownTimmy

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Posted 15 September 2013 - 11:32 PM

Vernon Perry vs. San Diego in the 1979 AFC Divisional Playoffs, four interceptions and he also blocked a FG, returning it 57 yards.  I consider the Oilers beating the Chargers the biggest upset in NFL postseason history.

 

Honorable mention: 

 

Kellen Winslow vs. Miami in the 1981 AFC Divisional Playoffs - 15 receptions and a blocked game winning FG in sweltering heat.  He allegedly lost 15 pounds worth of water weight during the game.

 

Dick Anderson vs Pittsburgh 12/3/73 - four first half interceptions, two returned for TD's, and he nearly had a third pick six but was stopped inside the Pittsburgh five-yard line.

Perry's performance was even more impressive in that the Oilers needed every one of those interceptions as they were playing without quarterback Dan Pastorini and running back Earl Campbell. I have never seen a defensive back have a better day.

 

The next week Perry began the AFC championship game by returning a Terry Bradshaw interception 75 yards for a touchdown. The man had a season for most DB's in two games.



#19 rhickok1109

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Posted 16 September 2013 - 08:20 AM

How about Paul Hornung in the 1961 NFL championship game? 20 rushes for 89 yards, 3 receptions for 47 yards, 19 points on 1 TD, 3 FG, and 4 PAT.



#20 TouchdownTimmy

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 03:13 PM

How about Paul Hornung in the 1961 NFL championship game? 20 rushes for 89 yards, 3 receptions for 47 yards, 19 points on 1 TD, 3 FG, and 4 PAT.

While on leave from the Army no less.