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In 1983, there were 46 field goal attempts of 52 yards or longer. That year, just 17 of them were successful… and four of them came from Baltimore Colts rookie kicker Raul Allegre. But that’s just the highlight for perhaps the best kicking season ever.

During the Colts last year in Baltimore, fans voted Allegre the team’s most valuable player. And with good reason: Allegre attempted 35 field goals, but given the distances of those kicks and the kicking environment in 1983, we would have expected Allegre to make 21.2 of those attempts. Instead, Allegre connected on 30 field goals, giving him 8.8 more field goals above average. That’s the highest rate in any single season ever. Yesterday, I unveiled a methodology for ranking kickers, based on two factors: the length of each field goal attempts and the year in which they kick was attempted. Using that formula, I then was able to grade every field goal kicking season since 1960.

Let’s use Nick Lowery’s 1985 season to walk through the table below. That year, playing for the Chiefs, Lowery went 4/4 on kicks from 20-29 yards, 10/11 from 30-39 yards, 7/7 from 40-49 yards, and 3/5 from over 50 yards. (Note that while I have the data on the specific distance of each attempt, it made sense to present it for consumption in this way.) He attempted 27 kicks, and given the distances and the era, was expected to be successful on 17.2 of them. Instead, he made 24, giving him 6.8 field goals above average. If you prefer to think in terms of rates, Lowery was expected to be true on 63.7% of kicks, but actually made 88.9% of his attempts; that’s 25.2% above expectation, the highest rate by any kicker with at least 25 attempts. The table below shows the top 300 seasons since 1960:

RkKickerYearTm10-1920-2930-3940-4950+AttExp MMadeFGaAvgExp RtAct RtDiff
1Raul Allegre1983BAL0/05/611/1210/124/53521.2308.860.6%85.7%25.1%
2Morten Andersen1985NOR0/04/513/1411/123/43523.1317.966.1%88.6%22.4%
3Gene Mingo1962DEN12/125/52/67/131/33919.4277.649.8%69.2%19.4%
4Fred Steinfort1980DEN2/25/54/510/145/83418.5267.554.4%76.5%22.1%
5Ali Haji-Sheikh1983NYG1/113/1311/128/112/54227.7357.365.9%83.3%17.4%
6Jan Stenerud1968KAN10/106/68/104/62/84022.7307.356.8%75%18.2%
7Gary Anderson1998MIN1/111/119/912/122/23527.8357.279.5%100%20.5%
8Jim Bakken1964STL0/00/00/00/00/03818.1256.947.7%65.8%18.1%
9Nick Lowery1985KAN0/04/410/117/73/52717.2246.863.7%88.9%25.2%
10Garo Yepremian1970MIA4/42/35/611/150/12915.5226.553.4%75.9%22.5%
11Neil Rackers2005ARI0/011/1110/1013/146/74233.6406.480.1%95.2%15.2%
12Gino Cappelletti1964BOS6/65/65/98/161/23918.7256.347.9%64.1%16.2%
13Jan Stenerud1970KAN6/68/99/106/111/64223.8306.256.8%71.4%14.7%
14Mark Moseley1979WAS2/25/58/109/131/33318.9256.157.2%75.8%18.6%
15Jan Stenerud1969KAN9/94/66/86/92/3352127659.9%77.1%17.3%
16Paul McFadden1984PHI0/04/513/1610/123/4372430664.8%81.1%16.2%
17Sam Baker1966PHI4/42/28/83/71/4251218648%72%24%
18Toni Fritsch1979HOU0/07/75/67/102/22515.1215.960.2%84%23.8%
19Nick Lowery1983KAN1/15/56/610/142/43018.2245.860.8%80%19.2%
20Fred Cox1965MIN2/210/108/122/91/23517.3235.749.3%65.7%16.4%
21George Blair1962SDG5/65/52/25/70/02011.3175.756.4%85%28.6%
22Tony Franklin1979PHI1/15/57/87/103/73117.3235.755.9%74.2%18.3%
23Fred Cox1964MIN5/55/55/86/120/33315.4215.646.6%63.6%17%
24Mike Vanderjagt2003IND0/017/177/712/121/13731.5375.585.1%100%14.9%
25Jim Bakken1965STL0/00/00/00/00/03115.5215.550.2%67.7%17.6%
26Nick Lowery1990KAN2/25/521/226/70/13728.6345.477.2%91.9%14.7%
27Cary Blanchard1996IND1/111/118/911/145/54030.7365.376.8%90%13.2%
28Norm Johnson1993ATL1/17/79/107/72/22720.7265.376.8%96.3%19.5%
29Eddie Murray1989DET0/03/38/98/81/12114.7205.370.2%95.2%25%
30Mike Mercer1966KAN6/66/84/54/91/22614.8205.256.8%76.9%20.1%
31Pete Stoyanovich1997KAN0/09/93/312/132/22720.8265.277%96.3%19.3%
32Paul McFadden1985PHI0/06/611/116/82/53019.8255.266.1%83.3%17.2%
33Don Chandler1962NYG5/67/85/62/60/22813.9195.149.5%67.9%18.3%
34Chester Marcol1972GNB3/47/813/178/162/34827.9335.158.2%68.8%10.5%
35Lou Groza1964CLE0/00/00/00/00/0331722551.5%66.7%15.2%
36Horst Muhlmann1970CIN4/45/79/113/94/6372025554.1%67.6%13.5%
37Jim Turner1968NYJ8/815/186/105/70/1462934563.1%73.9%10.9%
38Bruce Gossett1964RAM4/45/66/83/40/2241318554.3%75%20.7%
39Jim Turner1969NYJ10/117/87/107/151/34727.1324.957.6%68.1%10.5%
40Jan Stenerud1984MIN2/23/39/93/53/42315.1204.965.6%87%21.4%
41Jan Stenerud1981GNB2/27/89/92/32/22417.2224.871.5%91.7%20.2%
42Dean Biasucci1987IND0/05/612/126/71/22719.3244.771.3%88.9%17.6%
43Al Del Greco1998TEN1/18/815/1512/150/03931.3364.780.2%92.3%12.1%
44Al Del Greco1995HOU3/33/38/810/123/53122.3274.772%87.1%15.1%
45Gino Cappelletti1963BOS2/33/412/165/140/13817.3224.745.6%57.9%12.3%
46Morten Andersen1986NOR1/111/116/76/62/53021.3264.771.1%86.7%15.5%
47Mark Moseley1982WAS1/16/68/85/60/02115.3204.773%95.2%22.2%
48Rafael Septien1983DAL0/05/58/89/120/22717.3224.764.2%81.5%17.3%
49Sebastian Janikowski2009OAK0/03/38/89/106/82921.4264.673.6%89.7%16%
50Gary Anderson1983PIT2/28/99/108/100/03122.4274.672.2%87.1%14.9%
51Tom Dempsey1975RAM2/27/77/104/51/22616.4214.663.1%80.8%17.6%
52Garo Yepremian1972MIA7/73/37/84/113/83719.4244.652.5%64.9%12.3%
53Jeff Wilkins2003STL0/016/1611/138/94/44234.5394.582%92.9%10.8%
54Jason Hanson1998DET0/08/87/713/151/33324.5294.574.1%87.9%13.8%
55Nick Lowery1988KAN0/07/89/118/103/33222.5274.570.2%84.4%14.1%
56Lou Groza1965CLE0/00/00/00/00/02511.5164.545.9%64%18.1%
57Garo Yepremian1978MIA0/04/510/115/70/02314.5194.563.2%82.6%19.4%
58Nick Lowery1980KAN0/06/67/93/44/72615.5204.559.8%76.9%17.1%
59Mike Vanderjagt1998IND1/18/84/48/96/93122.6274.472.8%87.1%14.3%
60Bruce Gossett1973SFO4/49/128/94/71/13321.6264.465.4%78.8%13.4%
61Jason Hanson2008DET0/03/34/56/68/82216.6214.475.5%95.5%20%
62Gene Mingo1963DEN4/53/33/54/102/62911.6164.440%55.2%15.1%
63John Carney1994SDG0/012/1215/155/92/23829.6344.477.9%89.5%11.5%
64Morten Andersen1995ATL1/18/811/113/88/93726.7314.372.3%83.8%11.5%
65Nick Lowery1982KAN2/24/45/58/100/32414.8194.261.5%79.2%17.7%
66Eddie Murray1983DET0/06/613/153/73/43220.8254.265%78.1%13.2%
67Roger Ruzek1987DAL0/08/86/78/100/02517.8224.271.3%88%16.7%
68Tony Zendejas1991RAM0/04/48/83/32/21712.8174.275.5%100%24.5%
69Doug Brien1998NOR0/07/73/36/64/62215.9204.172.1%90.9%18.8%
70Jan Stenerud1975KAN1/17/88/95/101/43217.9224.155.9%68.8%12.9%
71Errol Mann1970DET8/82/33/54/73/62915.9204.154.9%69%14.1%
72Don Cockroft1972CLE5/57/87/82/51/12717.9224.166.4%81.5%15.1%
73Eddie Murray1985DET2/25/811/116/72/33121.9264.170.7%83.9%13.1%
74Matt Prater2013DEN2/24/45/58/86/72620.9254.180.6%96.2%15.6%
75Sebastian Janikowski2011OAK1/18/85/510/117/10352731477.1%88.6%11.5%
76Scott Norwood1988BUF1/110/1015/166/90/1372832475.7%86.5%10.8%
77Pete Stoyanovich1991MIA2/28/811/127/103/5372731473%83.8%10.8%
78Dean Biasucci1988IND0/08/85/66/106/8322125465.7%78.1%12.4%
79Blair Walsh2012MIN0/010/108/97/910/10383135481.7%92.1%10.4%
80Eddie Murray1984DET1/11/25/712/131/4271620459.4%74.1%14.6%
81Jason Hanson2003DET0/07/76/65/64/42318.1223.978.5%95.7%17.2%
82Rich Szaro1976NOR1/18/84/54/71/22314.1183.961.2%78.3%17.1%
83Ray Wersching1983SFO0/011/1110/103/51/43021.1253.970.2%83.3%13.1%
84Jeff Jaeger1991RAI3/37/710/137/72/43425.1293.973.8%85.3%11.5%
85Justin Tucker2013BAL0/010/1012/1310/116/74134.1383.983.2%92.7%9.5%
86Ryan Longwell2000GNB0/07/810/1013/153/53829.1333.976.7%86.8%10.2%
87Steve Myhra1961BAL0/00/00/00/00/03917.1213.943.9%53.8%9.9%
88Jim Turner1975DEN1/17/97/94/62/32817.2213.861.4%75%13.6%
89Fred Cox1969MIN7/77/78/114/100/23722.2263.860%70.3%10.3%
90George Blanda1966HOU3/40/13/78/122/63012.2163.840.7%53.3%12.6%
91Joe Nedney2005SFO0/04/410/1110/102/32822.2263.879.3%92.9%13.5%
92Nick Lowery1981KAN0/05/513/157/91/73622.2263.861.7%72.2%10.5%
93Morten Andersen1987NOR3/36/69/98/122/63624.2283.867.3%77.8%10.5%
94Dan Bailey2013DAL2/22/28/910/106/73024.3283.780.9%93.3%12.4%
95Charlie Gogolak1966WAS8/85/64/75/100/33418.3223.753.7%64.7%11%
96Lou Groza1961CLE0/00/00/00/00/02312.3163.753.4%69.6%16.2%
97Don Cockroft1974CLE1/17/73/33/40/11610.3143.764.3%87.5%23.2%
98Don Chandler1963NYG6/72/44/55/111/22914.3183.749.3%62.1%12.8%
99Fuad Reveiz1994MIN0/013/1312/138/101/33930.3343.777.7%87.2%9.5%
100Lou Michaels1962PIT0/00/00/00/00/04222.3263.753.1%61.9%8.8%
101Jason Hanson1997DET0/010/108/95/53/52922.3263.776.9%89.7%12.7%
102Lou Michaels1965BAL0/00/00/00/00/02813.3173.747.6%60.7%13.1%
103Gary Anderson1993PIT1/18/914/145/60/03024.3283.781.1%93.3%12.2%
104Efren Herrera1979SEA1/17/85/66/70/12315.3193.766.7%82.6%15.9%
105Curt Knight1970WAS6/65/55/74/90/02716.3203.760.5%74.1%13.6%
106Garo Yepremian1971MIA7/78/86/117/120/24024.3283.760.8%70%9.2%
107Eddie Murray1981DET1/15/59/147/113/43521.3253.761%71.4%10.4%
108Doug Pelfrey1994CIN1/18/88/109/102/43324.4283.673.8%84.8%11.1%
109Jason Hanson1999DET0/08/84/410/124/83222.4263.669.9%81.3%11.4%
110Jim Martin1963BAL0/00/00/00/00/03920.4243.652.2%61.5%9.3%
111Stephen Gostkowski2013NWE1/18/813/1311/135/64134.4383.683.9%92.7%8.8%
112Rob Bironas2011TEN0/05/59/109/106/73225.4293.679.3%90.6%11.3%
113Roger Ruzek1991PHI2/28/89/108/101/33324.4283.673.9%84.8%10.9%
114Fred Cox1975MIN0/03/36/63/71/1179.4133.655.3%76.5%21.2%
115Jim Bakken1973STL4/46/710/123/80/13219.4233.660.7%71.9%11.2%
116Jim Bakken1967STL8/88/98/113/100/13923.4273.660.1%69.2%9.2%
117Eddie Murray1988DET1/18/89/92/20/12116.4203.678.3%95.2%16.9%
118Mac Percival1968CHI7/86/95/66/111/23621.4253.659.6%69.4%9.9%
119Doug Brien1997NOR1/12/210/106/94/52719.5233.572%85.2%13.1%
120Ray Wersching1979SFO2/26/77/85/70/02416.5203.568.7%83.3%14.6%
121Sam Baker1964PHI0/00/00/00/00/02612.5163.548.1%61.5%13.5%
122Matt Stover1994CLE1/17/710/118/80/12822.5263.580.4%92.9%12.5%
123Fuad Reveiz1985MIA0/08/95/69/90/32718.5223.568.6%81.5%12.8%
124Matt Bahr1983CLE1/19/95/66/70/12417.5213.573.1%87.5%14.4%
125Connor Barth2011TAM0/05/56/613/142/32822.6263.480.6%92.9%12.3%
126Eddie Murray1993DAL4/44/49/128/83/53324.6283.474.5%84.8%10.4%
127Al Del Greco1993HOU0/013/138/94/54/73425.6293.475.2%85.3%10.1%
128Rafael Septien1981DAL1/111/118/97/120/23523.6273.467.4%77.1%9.7%
129Errol Mann1974DET0/06/813/154/80/13219.6233.461.2%71.9%10.6%
130Tony Franklin1986NWE1/17/715/179/160/04128.6323.469.8%78%8.3%
131Jason Hanson1993DET1/18/815/157/123/74330.6343.471.2%79.1%7.9%
132Lou Michaels1966BAL0/00/00/00/00/03917.6213.445.2%53.8%8.6%
133Don Cockroft1968CLE6/67/72/42/61/12414.6183.461%75%14%
134Gary Anderson2000MIN1/15/59/97/70/12318.6223.481.1%95.7%14.6%
135Jason Elam1995DEN0/07/914/155/75/73827.6313.472.7%81.6%8.8%
136Rick Danmeier1981MIN1/15/611/124/60/02517.7213.370.7%84%13.3%
137Don Chandler1967GNB2/26/87/84/110/02915.7193.354.1%65.5%11.5%
138Morten Andersen1992NOR0/010/108/108/113/33425.7293.375.5%85.3%9.8%
139Mike Hollis2000JAX0/06/78/87/83/32620.7243.379.6%92.3%12.7%
140Gene Mingo1960DEN7/92/56/72/51/22814.7183.352.5%64.3%11.8%
141Mark Moseley1978WAS0/04/45/78/132/63015.7193.352.3%63.3%11%
142Mick Luckhurst1984ATL0/04/49/104/93/42716.7203.361.9%74.1%12.2%
143Chester Marcol1974GNB3/37/78/126/121/53921.7253.355.7%64.1%8.4%
144Pat Leahy1978NYJ2/25/59/126/90/23018.7223.362.4%73.3%10.9%
145Dennis Partee1968SDG4/48/106/104/70/13218.7223.358.6%68.8%10.2%
146Adam Vinatieri2004NWE0/013/137/711/120/13327.7313.384.1%93.9%9.9%
147Bob Khayat1960WAS0/00/00/00/00/02311.8153.251.1%65.2%14.1%
148Matt Stover2000BAL2/29/912/1310/122/33931.8353.281.4%89.7%8.3%
149Bob Thomas1984CHI3/36/75/66/92/32818.8223.267%78.6%11.6%
150Joe Nedney2000CAR1/116/167/88/102/32822.8263.281.4%92.9%11.5%
151Ray Wersching1980SFO1/12/28/94/50/21911.8153.262%78.9%16.9%
152Tom Dempsey1971PHI0/06/71/22/33/5178.8123.251.7%70.6%18.9%
153Morten Andersen1993NOR2/27/77/711/141/53524.8283.270.8%80%9.2%
154Mike Clark1966PIT4/47/104/86/90/13217.8213.255.7%65.6%10%
155Rich Karlis1983DEN0/07/87/96/71/12517.8213.271.2%84%12.8%
156Stephen Gostkowski2014NWE1/111/1110/1112/131/13731.8353.286%94.6%8.6%
157Richie Cunningham1997DAL1/116/169/97/101/13730.8343.283.3%91.9%8.6%
158Jim Bakken1975STL0/010/115/74/60/02415.8193.266%79.2%13.1%
159Norm Johnson1984SEA0/09/104/46/71/32416.9203.170.3%83.3%13%
160Lou Groza1963CLE0/00/00/00/00/02311.9153.151.7%65.2%13.6%
161Jim Turner1973DEN5/55/58/93/91/53318.9223.157.2%66.7%9.4%
162Adam Vinatieri2014IND0/010/1010/107/83/33126.9303.186.7%96.8%10%
163Mike Vanderjagt1999IND2/210/1011/1310/111/23830.9343.181.3%89.5%8.2%
164Al Del Greco1996HOU0/07/714/1610/121/33828.9323.176.1%84.2%8.1%
165Steven Hauschka2013SEA0/010/119/911/123/33529.9333.185.4%94.3%8.8%
166Olindo Mare1999MIA1/19/917/179/143/54635.9393.178.1%84.8%6.7%
167Kevin Butler1985CHI2/213/1313/143/60/23727.9313.175.5%83.8%8.3%
168Jason Elam2001DEN0/011/118/810/132/43627.9313.177.6%86.1%8.5%
169Errol Mann1972DET3/35/58/113/91/12916.9203.158.4%69%10.6%
170Adam Vinatieri2002NWE0/06/612/128/101/23023.9273.179.8%90%10.2%
171Gary Anderson1985PIT1/112/1314/155/91/44229.9333.171.3%78.6%7.3%
172Wayne Walker1964DET0/00/00/00/00/0251114343.8%56%12.2%
173John Kasay2006CAR2/26/64/48/84/7272124377.7%88.9%11.2%
174Nick Lowery1987KAN1/14/48/104/62/2231619369.5%82.6%13.1%
175Tony Zendejas1986HOU1/17/77/96/71/3271922370.4%81.5%11.1%
176Justin Tucker2012BAL0/08/88/810/134/4332730381.9%90.9%9%
177Chris Boniol1995DAL0/011/1213/133/30/02824.1272.985.9%96.4%10.5%
178Jim Bakken1970STL4/43/67/76/110/43217.1202.953.3%62.5%9.2%
179Gene Mingo1964DEN2/21/12/32/31/3125.182.942.3%66.7%24.3%
180Nick Folk2013NYJ0/08/810/1112/143/33630.1332.983.6%91.7%8.1%
181Fred Cox1968MIN3/38/85/93/70/22916.1192.955.5%65.5%10%
182Chris Boniol1996DAL1/113/1312/135/71/23629.1322.980.8%88.9%8.1%
183Josh Scobee2011JAX1/15/55/57/85/62520.1232.980.4%92%11.6%
184Bruce Gossett1970SFO5/67/72/57/100/33118.1212.958.4%67.7%9.4%
185Florian Kempf1983HOU1/14/47/84/61/22114.1172.967.1%81%13.8%
186Rolf Benirschke1977SDG0/05/56/96/80/12314.1172.961.3%73.9%12.6%
187Rob Bironas2007TEN0/010/1212/129/104/53932.1352.982.3%89.7%7.4%
188Max Zendejas1987GNB0/03/36/77/80/11913.1162.969.1%84.2%15.1%
189Mick Luckhurst1985ATL0/07/98/108/111/13121.1242.968.2%77.4%9.2%
190Gary Anderson1987PIT0/08/95/57/112/22719.2222.870.9%81.5%10.5%
191Pat Leahy1986NYJ1/15/54/45/81/11913.2162.869.3%84.2%14.9%
192Donald Igwebuike1987TAM0/02/26/66/90/11811.2142.862%77.8%15.8%
193Dan Bailey2012DAL1/15/513/137/73/53126.2292.884.4%93.5%9.2%
194Phil Dawson2012CLE0/08/98/96/67/73126.2292.884.4%93.5%9.1%
195Olindo Mare2000MIA0/07/89/1012/130/03125.2282.881.2%90.3%9.1%
196Sebastian Janikowski2012OAK1/19/910/105/56/93428.2312.882.9%91.2%8.3%
197Mick Luckhurst1983ATL0/04/54/59/110/12214.2172.864.5%77.3%12.8%
198Fred Cox1970MIN8/811/144/47/160/44627.2302.859.1%65.2%6.1%
199Pete Stoyanovich1992MIA0/09/914/164/43/83727.2302.873.5%81.1%7.6%
200Mike Vanderjagt2000IND1/16/613/135/60/12722.2252.882.3%92.6%10.3%
201Jim Turner1972DEN6/62/36/86/110/12917.2202.859.4%69%9.6%
202Sebastian Janikowski2003OAK0/06/66/69/101/32519.2222.876.9%88%11.1%
203Jan Stenerud1974KAN1/17/75/83/41/42414.2172.859.3%70.8%11.5%
204Rafael Septien1984DAL2/26/79/94/82/32920.2232.869.8%79.3%9.5%
205Chris Jacke1993GNB1/112/126/106/76/73728.2312.876.3%83.8%7.4%
206John Kasay1993SEA1/15/510/114/63/52820.3232.772.4%82.1%9.8%
207Don Chandler1965GNB7/94/52/34/80/12614.3172.754.9%65.4%10.5%
208Jason Hanson1992DET0/05/510/104/62/52618.3212.770.3%80.8%10.5%
209Morten Andersen1990NOR0/05/55/68/123/42718.3212.767.7%77.8%10.1%
210Josh Brown2008STL0/08/87/710/136/83628.3312.778.6%86.1%7.5%
211Norm Johnson1992ATL0/06/64/54/74/42215.3182.769.5%81.8%12.3%
212Rob Bironas2008TEN0/06/67/715/191/13326.3292.779.7%87.9%8.2%
213Mark Moseley1975WAS0/01/39/106/90/32513.3162.753.2%64%10.8%
214Gary Anderson1984PIT0/08/96/98/112/33221.3242.766.6%75%8.4%
215Mark Moseley1971HOU0/08/92/46/100/32613.3162.751.2%61.5%10.3%
216Jeff Wilkins2005STL0/06/78/89/114/53124.3272.778.5%87.1%8.6%
217Matt Bryant2014ATL0/010/104/48/87/103226.3292.782.3%90.6%8.3%
218Tony Franklin1985NWE1/17/99/95/92/23021.3242.771.1%80%8.9%
219Nick Mike-Mayer1973ATL5/57/106/97/121/23823.3262.761.4%68.4%7%
220David Akers2004PHI0/04/46/715/182/33224.3272.776.1%84.4%8.3%
221Doug Brien1996NOR0/04/49/105/73/42518.4212.673.5%84%10.5%
222Nick Folk2008DAL0/01/17/810/112/22217.4202.678.9%90.9%12%
223Jason Elam1998DEN0/03/313/144/63/42720.4232.675.5%85.2%9.7%
224Jim O'Brien1971BAL4/48/93/45/111/22917.4202.660%69%9%
225Jan Stenerud1983GNB2/26/67/96/90/02618.4212.670.8%80.8%10%
226Tommy Davis1965SFO0/00/00/00/00/02714.4172.653.4%63%9.6%
227George Blanda1961HOU6/76/71/21/42/62913.4162.646.3%55.2%8.8%
228Chuck Nelson1986MIN0/07/89/104/72/32819.4222.669.4%78.6%9.1%
229Tom Dempsey1969NOR5/66/73/67/111/114119.5222.547.5%53.7%6.2%
230Jason Hanson2012DET1/13/310/1016/192/33629.5322.581.9%88.9%7%
231Jeff Wilkins2000STL2/25/56/63/31/11714.5172.585.1%100%14.9%
232Horst Muhlmann1969CIN6/65/53/41/31/62413.5162.556.1%66.7%10.5%
233George Blanda1967OAK5/64/46/105/80/23017.5202.558.3%66.7%8.4%
234Jason Elam2008ATL0/011/117/810/101/23126.5292.585.4%93.5%8.1%
235Uwe von Schamann1981MIA0/09/911/124/100/03121.5242.569.3%77.4%8.1%
236Jason Elam1999DEN1/18/87/88/115/83626.5292.573.6%80.6%7%
237Paul Hornung1961GNB8/93/42/41/11/42212.5152.556.8%68.2%11.4%
238Jeff Wilkins1996SFO0/016/167/87/100/03427.5302.580.9%88.2%7.3%
239Kai Forbath2012WAS0/03/32/311/111/11814.5172.580.6%94.4%13.9%
240Pat Leahy1988NYJ0/09/97/87/100/12820.5232.573.2%82.1%8.9%
241Don Cockroft1975CLE1/17/94/65/50/22314.5172.563.1%73.9%10.8%
242Eddie Murray1982DET0/06/62/23/40/0128.5112.571%91.7%20.6%
243John Carney2002NOR0/09/911/1311/120/13528.5312.581.5%88.6%7.1%
244Gary Anderson1990PIT1/13/38/88/110/22517.5202.570.1%80%9.9%
245Donald Igwebuike1989TAM0/09/96/65/102/32819.5222.569.8%78.6%8.8%
246Efren Herrera1976DAL1/18/86/83/50/12315.5182.567.6%78.3%10.7%
247John Kasay2008CAR0/07/79/911/121/33125.6282.482.4%90.3%7.9%
248Steve Christie1990TAM0/07/710/134/52/22720.6232.476.2%85.2%9%
249Jerry Kramer1962GNB3/33/33/40/10/0116.692.459.7%81.8%22.2%
250George Blanda1968OAK5/57/76/93/90/43418.6212.454.6%61.8%7.1%
251John Kasay1997CAR1/16/78/84/43/62619.6222.475.3%84.6%9.3%
252John Smith1979NWE0/06/611/136/140/03320.6232.462.4%69.7%7.3%
253Garo Yepremian1975MIA1/15/56/71/20/11610.6132.466.3%81.3%15%
254Don Cockroft1977CLE0/06/66/85/90/02314.6172.463.5%73.9%10.4%
255Nick Lowery1992KAN0/09/109/93/41/12419.6222.481.8%91.7%9.9%
256Jan Stenerud1967KAN4/47/95/83/92/63618.6212.451.7%58.3%6.6%
257Brad Daluiso1994NYG2/21/15/52/21/1118.6112.478.5%100%21.5%
258Pete Gogolak1965BUF10/108/99/151/80/44625.6282.455.7%60.9%5.1%
259Tony Zendejas1985HOU0/06/78/114/63/32718.6212.469%77.8%8.8%
260Norm Johnson1997PIT1/16/68/86/81/22519.6222.478.5%88%9.5%
261Horst Muhlmann1975PHI1/18/113/37/131/12917.6202.460.8%69%8.1%
262Roy Gerela1975PIT4/47/75/71/20/12114.6172.469.7%81%11.2%
263Phil Dawson2013SFO0/012/136/610/114/63629.6322.482.3%88.9%6.6%
264Jan Stenerud1973KAN5/63/48/108/150/33821.6242.457%63.2%6.2%
265Josh Scobee2013JAX0/03/312/124/54/52520.6232.482.6%92%9.4%
266Matt Stover1995CLE1/112/129/107/90/13326.7292.380.8%87.9%7.1%
267Sam Baker1960CLE0/00/00/00/00/0209.7122.348.3%60%11.7%
268Dan Carpenter2013BUF0/013/136/610/114/63630.7332.385.2%91.7%6.5%
269Mike Lansford1985RAM0/05/59/126/82/42919.7222.367.9%75.9%8%
270Adam Vinatieri2013IND0/06/610/1115/174/64032.7352.381.7%87.5%5.8%
271Errol Mann1969DET5/69/107/113/81/23722.7252.361.4%67.6%6.2%
272Morten Andersen1984NOR0/09/94/55/102/32717.7202.365.6%74.1%8.5%
273Garo Yepremian1973MIA5/58/106/95/91/43722.7252.361.4%67.6%6.2%
274Mike Lansford1987RAM1/16/63/47/90/12114.7172.370%81%10.9%
275Don Cockroft1973CLE4/47/84/77/110/13119.7222.363.6%71%7.4%
276Rian Lindell2006BUF0/08/85/58/102/22520.7232.382.9%92%9.1%
277Dick Bielski1961DAL0/03/32/31/30/093.762.341.4%66.7%25.3%
278John Carney1998SDG0/011/125/58/102/33023.7262.379.1%86.7%7.6%
279Rob Bironas2010TEN0/06/68/98/82/32621.7242.383.6%92.3%8.7%
280Todd Peterson1995SEA1/15/59/108/100/22820.8232.274.2%82.1%8%
281George Blanda1972OAK1/15/65/76/120/02614.8172.256.8%65.4%8.6%
282Bobby Howfield1972NYJ7/87/711/152/70/03724.8272.267%73%6%
283Mike Cofer1989SFO3/38/88/910/150/13626.8292.274.4%80.6%6.2%
284Toni Fritsch1980HOU1/17/97/84/60/02416.8192.269.9%79.2%9.2%
285Donald Igwebuike1985TAM1/15/58/105/103/63219.8222.261.8%68.8%6.9%
286Robbie Gould2006CHI0/06/614/1612/140/03629.8322.282.7%88.9%6.2%
287Norm Johnson1991ATL0/09/94/45/81/22316.8192.273%82.6%9.6%
288Ryan Longwell1998GNB1/16/613/159/100/13326.8292.281.2%87.9%6.7%
289Morten Andersen1991NOR0/06/611/136/92/43222.8252.271.3%78.1%6.9%
290Adam Vinatieri2010IND0/08/89/109/100/02823.8262.285%92.9%7.8%
291Todd Peterson1999SEA1/110/108/1114/161/24031.8342.279.5%85%5.5%
292Matt Stover2004BAL2/29/97/89/102/33226.8292.283.8%90.6%6.8%
293Rian Lindell2000SEA0/04/51/17/83/31712.8152.275.4%88.2%12.8%
294Jeff Jaeger1993RAI0/012/1213/56/104/74432.8352.274.6%79.5%4.9%
295Doug Pelfrey1995CIN0/08/910/1110/141/23626.8292.274.6%80.6%6%
296Gary Anderson1982PIT0/04/41/25/50/1127.8102.265.4%83.3%17.9%
297John Leypoldt1973BUF7/73/55/64/82/43018.9212.162.8%70%7.2%
298Mark Moseley1977WAS1/13/34/59/224/63718.9212.151%56.8%5.8%
299John Kasay1994SEA1/11/111/116/91/22417.9202.174.4%83.3%8.9%
300Dan Carpenter2014BUF0/09/912/137/86/83831.9342.183.9%89.5%5.6%

Some thoughts:

  • Jan Stenerud leads the way with ten top-100 seasons. He’s a Hall of Famer for a reason, folks, and his work from ’68 to ’70 was about as impressive a three-year stretch as one could imagine.
  • It’s easy to mock Garo Yepremian, but he was a legitimately great kicker in his prime. He was the top kicker in ’70 and ’71, ranked 2nd in ’72, and 4th in ’73. He also led the league in field goals above average in 1978.
  • How about that Mark Moseley 1982 season? Well, it was really good. The results here are not strike-adjusted, but if you sort by the last column, you’ll see that Moseley ranks 13th in kicking percentage above expectation. It was a great year, but no, probably not MVP-worthy. Excluding the AP, most organizations selected Dan Fouts as the MVP that year, which made a lot more sense. And Moseley only won the voting by two votes, 35-33.

What about the worst kicking seasons ever? Regular readers may recall that I have written about Paul Hornung‘s 1964 season before, and this old article provides a nice recap. Unsurprisingly, Hornung tops the list of the worst 300 field goal seasons in NFL history.

RkKickerYearTm10-1920-2930-3940-4950+AttExp MMadeFGaAvgExp RtAct RtDiff
1Paul Hornung1964GNB3/75/91/102/111/13820.612-8.654.1%31.6%-22.6%
2Scott Sisson1993NWE1/18/133/42/60/22620.914-6.980.5%53.8%-26.6%
3Seth Marler2003JAX0/010/114/85/121/23326.820-6.881.3%60.6%-20.7%
4David Akers2012SFO1/18/911/137/132/64235.229-6.283.8%69%-14.8%
5Greg Davis1992PHO0/06/103/44/90/32619.213-6.273.8%50%-23.8%
6Jim O'Brien1972BAL2/36/83/82/120/03119.113-6.161.7%41.9%-19.8%
7Mike Cofer1991SFO0/05/53/104/102/3282014-671.6%50%-21.6%
8Happy Feller1971PHI1/22/52/70/41/22011.86-5.858.9%30%-28.9%
9Wade Richey2001SDG0/013/154/73/71/33226.721-5.783.3%65.6%-17.7%
10Gino Cappelletti1969BOS6/71/46/121/90/23419.514-5.557.5%41.2%-16.3%
11Richie Cunningham1999DAL0/02/20/01/10/02217.412-5.479.2%54.5%-24.6%
12Neil Rackers2001CIN0/04/68/114/91/22822.417-5.480%60.7%-19.2%
13Todd Peterson2002PIT1/12/36/103/70/02117.412-5.482.6%57.1%-25.5%
14Doug Pelfrey1999CIN1/19/117/120/21/12723.318-5.386.1%66.7%-19.5%
15Bob Timberlake1965NYG0/20/00/21/110/0156.21-5.241.3%6.7%-34.7%
16Mike Mercer1969GNB2/21/31/71/50/01710.25-5.259.9%29.4%-30.5%
17Graham Gano2010WAS1/18/104/711/140/33529.224-5.283.4%68.6%-14.8%
18Neil Rackers2000CIN0/05/55/92/70/02117.112-5.181.5%57.1%-24.4%
19Gary Anderson1999MIN0/06/89/114/90/23024.119-5.180.4%63.3%-17%
20Nick Folk2009DAL1/15/66/75/121/2282318-582.3%64.3%-18%
21Chuck Nelson1987MIN0/010/122/40/61/2241813-575.2%54.2%-21%
22Kris Brown2001PIT0/07/715/206/152/2443530-579.6%68.2%-11.4%
23Mason Crosby2012GNB0/05/55/79/122/9332621-578.8%63.6%-15.1%
24Bill Capece1983TAM0/07/80/43/80/3231510-565.1%43.5%-21.6%
25Martin Gramatica2004TAM0/00/00/00/00/0191611-584%57.9%-26.1%
26Larry Barnes1960OAK1/23/41/121/50/22510.96-4.943.7%24%-19.7%
27Roy Gerela1978PIT1/15/63/93/80/22616.912-4.964.8%46.2%-18.7%
28Nick Mike-Mayer1977ATL0/01/11/11/10/01911.87-4.862.3%36.8%-25.5%
29Martin Gramatica2003TAM0/09/93/63/81/32620.816-4.880%61.5%-18.4%
30Kris Brown2009HOU0/011/136/92/62/43025.721-4.785.7%70%-15.7%
31Jim Gallery1987STL0/04/52/73/70/01913.69-4.671.8%47.4%-24.4%
32Eric Schubert1986STL0/02/20/41/50/0117.63-4.669.3%27.3%-42%
33Steve McLaughlin1995STL1/14/52/61/30/11612.68-4.678.8%50%-28.8%
34Joe Nedney1996MIA1/17/77/113/80/22922.618-4.677.9%62.1%-15.9%
35Joe Danelo1976NYG1/13/33/110/21/42112.68-4.659.9%38.1%-21.8%
36Jan Stenerud1985MIN1/210/113/71/50/12619.615-4.675.3%57.7%-17.6%
37Happy Feller1973NOR4/50/00/40/30/0128.44-4.470.4%33.3%-37.1%
38Pat Leahy1991NYJ3/313/169/111/50/23730.426-4.482.1%70.3%-11.9%
39Jake Arians2001BUF0/06/62/44/110/02116.412-4.477.9%57.1%-20.8%
40Jerry DePoyster1968DET0/01/32/30/80/1157.33-4.349%20%-29%
41Mac Percival1971CHI4/61/35/115/110/23319.315-4.358.6%45.5%-13.2%
42Tony Franklin1980PHI4/42/57/111/81/33120.316-4.365.5%51.6%-13.9%
43Ken Vinyard1970ATL4/50/24/71/90/22513.39-4.353.1%36%-17.1%
44Michael Koenen2006ATL0/01/11/40/11/397.33-4.380.8%33.3%-47.5%
45Tommy Davis1967SFO3/64/65/101/91/23318.314-4.355.4%42.4%-12.9%
46Bobby Walston1962PHI0/00/00/00/00/0158.34-4.355.1%26.7%-28.4%
47Fred Steinfort1983NWE0/03/43/50/60/01510.36-4.368.4%40%-28.4%
48Rian Lindell2001SEA0/07/84/56/143/53224.220-4.275.8%62.5%-13.3%
49Mike Hollis2001JAX0/04/58/116/110/12822.218-4.279.4%64.3%-15.1%
50Tim Mazzetti1979ATL0/09/111/63/70/12517.213-4.268.7%52%-16.7%
51Gene Mingo1969PIT5/61/44/72/90/02616.212-4.262.2%46.2%-16%
52Chip Lohmiller1993WAS2/24/48/121/41/62820.216-4.272%57.1%-14.8%
53Adam Vinatieri2003NWE0/016/174/85/80/13429.125-4.185.7%73.5%-12.1%
54Mac Percival1969CHI1/23/64/80/30/22112.18-4.157.8%38.1%-19.7%
55Jason Elam2009ATL0/04/44/83/51/2191612-484.4%63.2%-21.3%
56Jim Breech1986CIN1/24/55/75/142/4322117-465.7%53.1%-12.6%
57Dean Biasucci1992IND0/03/36/116/121/3292016-469.1%55.2%-13.9%
58John Hall2000NYJ0/08/96/86/121/3322521-478.2%65.6%-12.5%
59Gene Mingo1970PIT2/21/60/02/70/31895-450%27.8%-22.2%
60Roy Gerela1969HOU9/95/63/121/81/5402319-457.5%47.5%-10%
61Dave Jacobs1981CLE0/02/32/60/10/21284-466.4%33.3%-33.1%
62Greg Davis1998OAK0/05/65/86/111/2272117-477.7%63%-14.7%
63Don Chandler1966GNB6/72/42/92/70/1281612-457%42.9%-14.1%
64Sebastian Janikowski2005OAK1/17/85/67/120/33023.920-3.979.8%66.7%-13.1%
65Chris Boniol1999CHI0/06/62/63/50/11814.911-3.982.9%61.1%-21.8%
66Fred Cox1977MIN0/03/74/61/40/01711.98-3.970%47.1%-22.9%
67Ali Haji-Sheikh1984NYG1/13/38/135/120/43320.917-3.963.2%51.5%-11.7%
68Jeff Reed2003PIT0/09/126/77/121/13226.823-3.883.8%71.9%-11.9%
69Dale Livingston1970GNB5/66/113/71/40/02818.815-3.867.2%53.6%-13.6%
70Owen Pochman2003SFO0/01/13/84/50/11511.88-3.878.7%53.3%-25.4%
71Uwe von Schamann1984MIA0/07/72/50/40/31912.89-3.867.3%47.4%-20%
72Dave Green1975CIN1/15/81/73/50/02113.810-3.865.5%47.6%-17.9%
73Mike Lansford1990RAM3/44/45/73/90/02418.815-3.878.1%62.5%-15.6%
74Ray Wersching1973SDG4/45/62/50/80/22514.711-3.758.9%44%-14.9%
75Cole Ford1997OAK0/03/54/65/101/12216.713-3.775.8%59.1%-16.7%
76Josh Scobee2009JAX0/07/84/43/74/92821.718-3.777.4%64.3%-13.1%
77Paul Edinger2004CHI0/06/72/54/73/52418.615-3.677.7%62.5%-15.2%
78Ryan Longwell2001GNB0/03/49/107/141/33123.620-3.676.3%64.5%-11.8%
79Mike Cofer1993SFO0/07/95/74/70/32619.616-3.675.5%61.5%-14%
80Jim Turner1967NYJ6/96/113/52/70/03220.617-3.664.5%53.1%-11.4%
81Roy Gerela1979SDG0/01/20/20/30/074.61-3.665.6%14.3%-51.3%
82Bob Jencks1965WAS0/00/00/00/00/02213.610-3.661.8%45.5%-16.3%
83Curt Knight1973WAS8/85/76/133/90/54225.622-3.660.9%52.4%-8.5%
84Booth Lusteg1968PIT2/24/52/70/60/02011.68-3.657.9%40%-17.9%
85Wade Richey1998SFO0/09/103/46/130/02721.618-3.679.9%66.7%-13.2%
86John Hall1997NYJ1/110/1111/172/64/64131.628-3.677%68.3%-8.7%
87Bruce Gossett1967RAM5/59/132/104/100/54323.520-3.554.8%46.5%-8.3%
88Jeff Reed2010PIT0/03/33/43/30/02218.515-3.584.3%68.2%-16.1%
89Steve Mike-Mayer1977DET0/02/53/73/70/01911.58-3.560.7%42.1%-18.6%
90Michael Husted1999OAK2/23/37/118/120/33123.520-3.575.9%64.5%-11.4%
91Rich Karlis1988DEN1/19/106/135/82/43626.523-3.573.6%63.9%-9.7%
92Dick Van Raaphorst1966SDG7/83/84/72/70/13119.516-3.562.9%51.6%-11.3%
93Pete Gogolak1971NYG1/13/32/70/60/0179.56-3.555.8%35.3%-20.5%
94Garrett Hartley2013NOR2/25/65/89/131/13025.522-3.584.9%73.3%-11.6%
95Shaun Suisham2011PIT2/28/86/86/111/23126.523-3.585.4%74.2%-11.2%
96John Kasay1992SEA0/04/58/112/60/02217.414-3.479.3%63.6%-15.7%
97Roger LeClerc1965CHI0/00/00/00/00/02614.411-3.455.5%42.3%-13.2%
98Sam Baker1965PHI0/00/00/00/00/02312.49-3.454%39.1%-14.8%
99John Aveni1961WAS0/00/00/00/00/0288.45-3.430%17.9%-12.2%
100Frank Corral1980RAM1/111/122/52/90/33019.416-3.464.7%53.3%-11.3%
101Sebastian Janikowski2013OAK0/06/64/68/113/73024.421-3.481.3%70%-11.3%
102David Posey1978NWE1/13/45/112/60/02214.411-3.465.3%50%-15.3%
103Olindo Mare2006MIA0/010/106/89/121/63629.426-3.481.6%72.2%-9.4%
104John Roveto1982CHI1/10/00/42/41/4137.34-3.356.5%30.8%-25.7%
105Fred Steinfort1981DEN0/06/95/116/80/23020.317-3.367.8%56.7%-11.1%
106Jeff Jaeger1999CHI0/00/00/21/51/185.32-3.366.4%25%-41.4%
107Bruce Gossett1974SFO2/25/72/32/120/02414.311-3.359.6%45.8%-13.7%
108Rian Lindell2003BUF0/011/123/33/70/22420.317-3.384.5%70.8%-13.7%
109Jan Stenerud1977KAN0/06/62/50/50/21811.38-3.362.6%44.4%-18.2%
110Kevin Butler1995CHI0/016/195/62/40/23126.323-3.384.7%74.2%-10.5%
111Matt Bahr1982CLE1/13/41/32/70/01510.37-3.368.5%46.7%-21.8%
112Graham Gano2011WAS0/014/155/98/114/64134.331-3.383.6%75.6%-8%
113Roger LeClerc1962CHI0/00/00/00/00/02716.313-3.360.2%48.1%-12.1%
114Roger LeClerc1961CHI0/00/00/00/00/02413.310-3.355.3%41.7%-13.6%
115Kevin Butler1991CHI1/19/113/55/91/32922.219-3.276.7%65.5%-11.2%
116Adam Vinatieri2007IND1/114/158/100/20/12926.223-3.290.5%79.3%-11.2%
117James Tuthill2002WAS0/03/34/72/51/11613.210-3.282.7%62.5%-20.2%
118Bobby Howfield1969DEN4/54/80/24/111/32916.213-3.255.9%44.8%-11.1%
119Michael Husted2000WAS0/04/40/30/10/087.24-3.290.1%50%-40.1%
120Bob Jencks1963CHI0/00/00/00/00/0104.21-3.242%10%-32%
121Olindo Mare2007NOR0/04/53/42/31/51713.210-3.277.6%58.8%-18.8%
122Jeff Wilkins1997STL0/08/98/127/142/23728.225-3.276.2%67.6%-8.6%
123Dick Guesman1961NYT2/61/41/31/20/0158.25-3.254.6%33.3%-21.3%
124Dave Rayner2007KAN0/03/37/105/80/12218.215-3.282.6%68.2%-14.5%
125Billy Cundiff2011BAL1/19/910/127/91/63731.228-3.284.3%75.7%-8.6%
126Fuad Reveiz1990SDG0/05/53/33/40/075.22-3.273.9%28.6%-45.3%
127Toni Linhart1978BAL0/05/52/61/60/01711.28-3.265.6%47.1%-18.6%
128Curt Knight1972WAS4/40/36/114/80/43017.214-3.257.2%46.7%-10.5%
129Wayne Walker1965DET0/00/00/00/00/02211.18-3.150.7%36.4%-14.3%
130Bill Bell1972ATL3/55/67/101/90/03019.116-3.163.8%53.3%-10.5%
131Chip Lohmiller1995NOR0/04/63/40/21/21411.18-3.179.5%57.1%-22.3%
132Neil O'Donoghue1983STL0/14/63/86/102/32818.115-3.164.7%53.6%-11.1%
133Bob Thomas1977CHI0/06/96/102/50/22717.114-3.163.4%51.9%-11.5%
134Tony Franklin1988MIA0/01/22/40/11/4117.14-3.164.6%36.4%-28.2%
135Dave Rayner2006GNB0/011/126/98/111/33529.126-3.183.1%74.3%-8.9%
136Fred Steinfort1978ATL0/01/11/51/40/0106.13-3.160.9%30%-30.9%
137Scott Norwood1991BUF1/17/83/75/92/42921.118-3.172.7%62.1%-10.6%
138Mike Eischeid1966OAK2/24/84/71/80/12614.111-3.154.1%42.3%-11.8%
139Shaun Suisham2008WAS0/07/77/911/161/43629.126-3.180.7%72.2%-8.5%
140Jimmy Keyes1968MIA3/33/51/40/40/016107-362.8%43.8%-19.1%
141Mac Percival1972CHI6/63/42/41/90/1241512-362.7%50%-12.7%
142David Treadwell1994NYG1/15/54/71/40/0171411-382.5%64.7%-17.8%
143Steve Christie2000BUF2/211/134/69/130/1352926-382.9%74.3%-8.6%
144Roger Ruzek1988DAL0/04/54/73/71/3221512-368.3%54.5%-13.7%
145Mason Crosby2009GNB1/113/137/94/72/6363027-383.4%75%-8.4%
146Roy Gerela1976PIT2/22/66/104/70/1261714-365.4%53.8%-11.6%
147Jim Martin1964WAS0/00/00/00/00/0281512-353.6%42.9%-10.7%
148Billy Cundiff2002DAL0/03/35/74/80/1191512-379%63.2%-15.8%
149Nick Folk2010NYJ1/110/1114/163/62/5393330-384.6%76.9%-7.7%
150Tommy Brooker1965KAN5/135/62/51/40/2301613-353.3%43.3%-10%
151David Akers2007PHI0/012/1210/101/61/43226.924-2.984.2%75%-9.2%
152Gary Kroner1965DEN3/64/56/110/40/32915.913-2.955%44.8%-10.1%
153Gino Cappelletti1970BOS2/33/40/21/50/1158.96-2.959.6%40%-19.6%
154Phil Dawson2006CLE0/05/69/106/121/12923.921-2.982.5%72.4%-10%
155Rolf Benirschke1986SDG1/16/95/83/51/22518.916-2.975.6%64%-11.6%
156Mike Cofer1995IND0/02/20/41/21/196.94-2.976.7%44.4%-32.2%
157Nick Mike-Mayer1978PHI0/05/53/70/40/11710.98-2.964.1%47.1%-17%
158Matt Bahr1995NWE1/212/123/75/72/53325.923-2.978.5%69.7%-8.8%
159Nick Mike-Mayer1976ATL2/22/41/55/100/02112.910-2.961.4%47.6%-13.7%
160Dennis Patera1968SFO1/11/30/20/10/184.92-2.961.1%25%-36.1%
161Chuck Nelson1983RAM0/01/33/41/40/0117.95-2.971.7%45.5%-26.2%
162Mike Mercer1961MIN4/64/51/50/50/02111.99-2.956.6%42.9%-13.7%
163John Wittenborn1968HOU1/21/21/31/40/2136.94-2.952.7%30.8%-21.9%
164Cary Blanchard1993NYJ1/17/84/55/100/22619.817-2.876.3%65.4%-10.9%
165Jose Cortez2002SFO0/011/138/94/100/02420.818-2.886.9%75%-11.9%
166Steve Mike-Mayer1980BAL0/05/63/84/70/22314.812-2.864.5%52.2%-12.4%
167Lou Groza1966CLE0/00/00/00/00/02311.89-2.851.5%39.1%-12.4%
168Benny Ricardo1981NOR0/05/53/95/100/12515.813-2.863.3%52%-11.3%
169Nate Freese2014DET0/02/21/10/40/075.83-2.883.3%42.9%-40.5%
170Danny Villanueva1967DAL0/00/00/00/00/01910.88-2.857%42.1%-14.9%
171Steve Christie2002SDG0/08/85/64/91/32620.818-2.880.1%69.2%-10.9%
172Jim Bakken1978STL0/04/54/73/100/02213.811-2.862.8%50%-12.8%
173Billy Cundiff2014CLE0/06/610/135/71/32924.822-2.885.5%75.9%-9.7%
174Rich Karlis1985DEN2/27/96/118/110/53825.823-2.867.9%60.5%-7.4%
175Jackie Simpson1962OAK1/21/31/40/10/0105.83-2.857.8%30%-27.8%
176Dick Guesman1964DEN0/10/03/103/90/2228.86-2.839.9%27.3%-12.6%
177Greg Davis1996ARI0/07/91/21/30/01411.89-2.884.1%64.3%-19.8%
178Fred Steinfort1983BUF0/03/43/50/60/063.81-2.862.8%16.7%-46.1%
179Joe Danelo1984BUF0/05/52/40/41/31610.78-2.767.2%50%-17.2%
180Chris Bahr1980OAK0/04/69/126/130/63721.719-2.758.8%51.4%-7.4%
181Neil O'Donoghue1985STL1/13/54/62/40/21812.710-2.770.7%55.6%-15.2%
182Eddie Garcia1984GNB0/00/21/31/31/195.73-2.763.7%33.3%-30.3%
183Wade Richey2000SFO0/06/76/83/60/12217.715-2.780.6%68.2%-12.4%
184Mike Nugent2009TAM1/11/11/21/40/064.72-2.778.7%33.3%-45.4%
185Toni Linhart1979BAL0/01/12/40/10/085.73-2.771.5%37.5%-34%
186Allen Green1961DAL2/31/42/30/40/1157.75-2.751.5%33.3%-18.1%
187Tommy Davis1969SFO2/21/20/20/40/0105.73-2.757.2%30%-27.2%
188Jeff Reed2006PIT1/16/78/114/71/12722.720-2.784.1%74.1%-10.1%
189Billy Cundiff2012WAS0/01/13/53/40/2129.77-2.780.9%58.3%-22.6%
190John Roveto1981CHI0/16/72/32/70/01812.710-2.770.6%55.6%-15%
191Jack Spikes1963KAN0/01/21/60/30/2134.72-2.736.1%15.4%-20.7%
192Ian Sunter1980CIN0/07/73/71/50/12013.711-2.768.5%55%-13.5%
193Neil Rackers2007ARI2/25/56/85/63/93023.721-2.779%70%-9%
194Jim Turner1978DEN1/13/43/74/80/22213.711-2.762.2%50%-12.2%
195Tony Franklin1987NWE0/05/56/113/71/32617.715-2.768%57.7%-10.3%
196Jose Cortez2001SFO1/26/76/74/81/12520.718-2.782.7%72%-10.7%
197Stephen Gostkowski2006NWE0/010/117/102/41/12622.720-2.787.2%76.9%-10.3%
198Mike Cofer1992SFO0/07/85/86/100/12720.718-2.776.5%66.7%-9.9%
199Nick Novak2006WAS0/01/11/33/60/0107.75-2.776.6%50%-26.6%
200Jason Staurovsky1992NYJ1/10/01/21/50/085.73-2.770.8%37.5%-33.3%
201Roger Ruzek1989DAL2/23/46/102/50/1117.75-2.769.6%45.5%-24.1%
202Tim Seder2001DAL0/05/53/53/60/11713.711-2.780.3%64.7%-15.6%
203Teddy Garcia1988NWE0/02/31/32/51/2138.76-2.766.6%46.2%-20.4%
204Dale Livingston1968CIN4/65/73/61/60/12615.613-2.660.1%50%-10.1%
205Steve Mike-Mayer1976SFO3/35/84/84/80/12818.616-2.666.5%57.1%-9.4%
206Mack Yoho1963BUF4/53/42/81/70/02412.610-2.652.6%41.7%-11%
207Dean Biasucci1991IND1/15/53/45/131/32617.615-2.667.8%57.7%-10.1%
208Olindo Mare1997MIA2/214/158/103/61/33630.628-2.685.1%77.8%-7.3%
209Alex Henery2014DET0/00/00/00/21/353.61-2.672.2%20%-52.2%
210Randy Bullock2013HOU1/17/75/512/171/53528.626-2.681.7%74.3%-7.4%
211Lou Michaels1969BAL0/00/00/00/00/03116.614-2.653.5%45.2%-8.4%
212Paul Edinger2005MIN0/011/113/88/103/53427.625-2.681.2%73.5%-7.6%
213John Love1967WAS0/11/41/20/00/074.62-2.665.5%28.6%-37%
214Michael Husted1994TAM0/08/810/124/101/53525.623-2.673.1%65.7%-7.4%
215Tony Zendejas1989HOU1/18/99/145/112/23727.625-2.674.5%67.6%-7%
216Mac Percival1974DAL0/01/11/40/30/084.62-2.657.2%25%-32.2%
217Mark Moseley1986WAS1/12/23/30/10/0128.66-2.671.4%50%-21.4%
218Chris Boniol1998PHI3/33/34/53/91/12116.614-2.678.8%66.7%-12.2%
219Bobby Howfield1971NYJ1/11/35/71/70/11910.68-2.655.5%42.1%-13.4%
220Teddy Garcia1989MIN0/00/01/40/00/153.51-2.571%20%-51%
221Caleb Sturgis2014MIA1/112/127/86/103/63731.529-2.585.3%78.4%-6.9%
222Mark Moseley1970PHI7/94/62/61/30/12516.514-2.566.2%56%-10.2%
223Charlie Baumann1992NWE2/24/43/72/40/01713.511-2.579.6%64.7%-14.9%
224Jan Stenerud1979KAN0/14/63/45/100/22314.512-2.563.2%52.2%-11%
225Sebastian Janikowski2000OAK1/16/66/78/141/43224.522-2.576.6%68.8%-7.9%
226Dave Rayner2011BUF0/05/63/40/12/41512.510-2.583.4%66.7%-16.8%
227Raul Allegre1985IND0/09/115/62/60/32618.516-2.571.2%61.5%-9.6%
228Nick Novak2008KAN0/03/31/32/30/1108.56-2.584.9%60%-24.9%
229Boris Shlapak1972BAL0/00/00/00/50/382.50-2.531.1%0%-31.1%
230George Blair1961SDG8/142/51/32/50/02715.513-2.557.3%48.1%-9.2%
231Al Del Greco1988PHO1/14/63/33/91/22114.512-2.569%57.1%-11.8%
232Bob Etter1969ATL6/65/54/80/90/23017.515-2.558.2%50%-8.2%
233Dan Carpenter2010MIA1/19/95/511/184/84132.530-2.579.2%73.2%-6%
234Chester Marcol1979GNB0/01/22/51/30/0106.54-2.564.6%40%-24.6%
235Joe Danelo1983BUF0/02/45/63/60/42012.510-2.562.3%50%-12.3%
236Jack Hill1961DEN2/32/51/10/50/1157.55-2.549.7%33.3%-16.3%
237Steve Little1980STL0/01/22/40/20/085.43-2.468.1%37.5%-30.6%
238Momcilo Gavric1969SFO0/02/31/20/50/1115.43-2.449.5%27.3%-22.2%
239Dick Van Raaphorst1967SDG5/83/54/53/110/13017.415-2.458.1%50%-8.1%
240Bob Thomas1985SDG1/18/86/103/70/22820.418-2.473%64.3%-8.7%
241Ray Wersching1985SFO0/05/75/83/50/12115.413-2.473.4%61.9%-11.5%
242Mike Vanderjagt2006DAL0/06/75/61/41/11815.413-2.485.6%72.2%-13.4%
243Kris Brown2005HOU0/09/912/174/61/23428.426-2.483.5%76.5%-7.1%
244Billy Cundiff2009BAL2/218/1810/166/60/41714.412-2.484.7%70.6%-14.1%
245Pete Stoyanovich1996KAN1/17/85/74/70/12419.417-2.480.8%70.8%-10%
246Bob Thomas1983CHI1/19/90/43/61/52516.414-2.465.6%56%-9.6%
247Brad Daluiso2000NYG0/08/85/84/70/02319.417-2.484.3%73.9%-10.4%
248Dennis Partee1974SDG0/01/20/20/10/053.41-2.467.7%20%-47.7%
249Steve Christie1999BUF2/210/107/103/93/33427.425-2.480.5%73.5%-7%
250Eddie Murray1987DET1/16/67/125/111/23222.420-2.469.9%62.5%-7.4%
251Frank Corral1979RAM1/15/52/65/120/12515.413-2.461.5%52%-9.5%
252Matt Bahr1993PHI1/15/75/52/50/01310.48-2.479.8%61.5%-18.2%
253Charlie Durkee1967NOR3/32/86/73/110/33216.414-2.451.1%43.8%-7.4%
254Rich Szaro1977NOR0/03/42/30/20/3127.45-2.461.3%41.7%-19.7%
255Hayden Epstein2002JAX0/03/32/30/20/197.45-2.481.7%55.6%-26.2%
256Norm Johnson1999PHI0/08/95/85/60/22520.318-2.381.4%72%-9.4%
257Charlie Durkee1972NOR1/10/12/30/40/095.33-2.359.2%33.3%-25.9%
258Jim Turner1979DEN1/17/94/81/30/02115.313-2.372.9%61.9%-11%
259Brandon McManus2014DEN0/05/52/32/30/21311.39-2.387%69.2%-17.7%
260Jay Feely2003ATL0/06/69/114/70/32721.319-2.378.9%70.4%-8.5%
261Chris Bahr1985RAI0/09/97/103/121/13222.320-2.369.7%62.5%-7.2%
262Blair Walsh2014MIN2/24/58/107/95/93528.326-2.380.8%74.3%-6.5%
263Scott Norwood1990BUF0/09/115/86/100/02922.320-2.376.8%69%-7.9%
264Dale Dawson1987MIN0/00/01/20/30/053.31-2.365.6%20%-45.6%
265Garo Yepremian1977MIA0/03/45/72/90/22212.310-2.355.8%45.5%-10.3%
266Jason Elam2002DEN1/19/97/95/114/63628.326-2.378.5%72.2%-6.3%
267Ken Willis1992TAM0/04/41/45/80/01410.38-2.373.4%57.1%-16.2%
268Dean Biasucci1994IND1/15/53/75/92/22418.316-2.376.1%66.7%-9.4%
269Wayne Walker1967DET0/00/00/00/00/0157.35-2.348.4%33.3%-15%
270Tom Jurich1978NOR0/00/20/00/10/032.20-2.275%0%-75%
271Ola Kimrin2004WAS0/03/32/31/30/1108.26-2.282.4%60%-22.4%
272John Hall1998NYJ0/09/99/136/101/33527.225-2.277.8%71.4%-6.4%
273John Carney2005NOR1/112/134/68/120/03227.225-2.285.1%78.1%-7%
274Steve Mike-Mayer1979BAL0/05/74/52/80/02013.211-2.266.1%55%-11.1%
275Neil O'Donoghue1979TAM1/13/45/92/50/01913.211-2.269.5%57.9%-11.6%
276Olindo Mare2011CAR1/17/76/98/90/22824.222-2.286.5%78.6%-7.9%
277Gerry Perry1961STL0/00/00/00/00/0179.27-2.254.1%41.2%-12.9%
278Jeff Jaeger1992RAI0/03/54/65/93/62617.215-2.266.1%57.7%-8.4%
279Cookie Gilchrist1962BUF2/52/52/32/50/22010.28-2.251%40%-11%
280Paul Edinger2003CHI1/14/49/139/143/43628.226-2.278.3%72.2%-6.1%
281Matt Prater2007ATL0/00/00/00/00/043.21-2.279.4%25%-54.4%
282Luis Zendejas1989PHI1/13/34/66/120/21511.29-2.274.5%60%-14.5%
283Tony Zendejas1990HOU0/02/33/52/40/0129.27-2.276.5%58.3%-18.1%
284Scott Blanton1997WAS2/24/45/64/81/42418.216-2.275.7%66.7%-9%
285Matt Prater2008DEN0/07/88/95/115/63427.225-2.279.9%73.5%-6.4%
286David Treadwell1991DEN5/510/109/123/90/03629.227-2.281%75%-6%
287Nick Lowery1996NYJ0/09/96/72/80/02419.117-2.179.8%70.8%-8.9%
288Steve Mike-Mayer1978NOR1/12/32/30/21/4138.16-2.162.5%46.2%-16.4%
289Jeff White1973NWE6/82/33/53/70/22516.114-2.164.5%56%-8.5%
290Danny Villanueva1966DAL0/00/00/00/00/03119.117-2.161.7%54.8%-6.8%
291Bob Thomas1979CHI1/14/79/112/70/12718.116-2.167%59.3%-7.8%
292John Leypoldt1976BUF0/02/31/15/70/132.10-2.169.9%0%-69.9%
293Bob Khayat1962WAS0/00/00/00/00/02513.111-2.152.4%44%-8.4%
294Jeff Gaffney1987SDG0/03/30/30/00/065.13-2.184.8%50%-34.8%
295Roger Ruzek1992PHI2/23/34/66/131/12518.116-2.172.3%64%-8.3%
296Cotton Davidson1961DTX0/10/00/00/10/042.10-2.152%0%-52%
297Tommy Davis1963SFO0/00/00/00/00/03112.110-2.139%32.3%-6.7%
298Mike Wood1979STL0/04/46/61/10/374.12-2.158.2%28.6%-29.6%
299Jack Spikes1961DTX2/52/40/00/40/0136.14-2.146.7%30.8%-15.9%
300Jim Bakken1977STL0/02/23/52/80/1169.17-2.156.6%43.8%-12.9%

That year, he was 8.6 field goals below average, an astonishing feat. If you don’t adjust for era, you get to the even more stunning conclusion: he missed 26 field goal attempts, a record that surely will not be broken any time soon.

Check back tomorrow for the career kicker rankings!

  • Anders

    Are you going to total kickers season’s so you get how much better was stenerud better than average over his whole career? Yes this in a way punish some kickers for kicking 1 season too many, but also should in theory be great for a kicker that is just good or very good, but over a very long time.

    An interesting note is how few top 300 games Vinatieri has, while also having 2 bad seasons (compared to a Morten Andersen, who has zero).

    Can we also just think about how good Andersen was? 9 top 300 season (only 1 less than Stenerud), but zero of the top 300 worst seasons, where Stenerud actually have 3?

    • That is tomorrow’s post 🙂

      • James

        Would be interesting to see if excluding negative seasons has any impact on the overall rankings.

  • Palmetto Bronc

    Question, doesn’t this methodology unfairly penalize modern kickers? If your graphs from yesterday show the continued increase in accuracy over time, the ability for a kicker to be 20%+ better than the expected rate no longer exists.
    Look at lines 156 (2014 Gostkowski made 35 of 37) and 162 (2014 Vinatieri made 30 of 31) the expected rate for these two performances is over 86%. So even with phenomenal conversion rates they are only 10% over the expected rate. So I would say this is a great way to compare kickers in narrow bands of years (maybe 3 – 5 year blocks). Allegre is number one because his performance was so much greater than the average kicker in his year.
    Possibly some comparison to Standard Deviation in each year would help normalize the data to compare across eras.
    What would be interesting is if you could check those kickers that had multiple years standing out from their peers (Morten Andersen) did they bring some new approach that others adopted over time.

    • Great question.

      Let’s envision a world where field goal kicking gets even easier, or, perhaps stated differently, where field goal kickers become even more accurate. Kicks within 40 yards are made 99% of the time, kicks within 50 yards are made 95% of the time, and kicks within 60 yards are made 90% of the time. In short, kickers are awesome.

      This methodology would make it impossible for kickers playing in that era to stand out the way kickers could in earlier eras. But that seems like the correct way to analyze the situation. After all, how much more valuable is the best kicker than average if average is nearly the same as the best?

      This fictional example is an extreme version of what’s actually going on. If Vinatieri makes 30 out of 31 kicks, and an average kicker would have made 27 out of 31, Vinatieri’s valuable, but, well, does that really compare to doing what Stenerud or Lowery did during their eras? I don’t think so. Here, a rising tide is lifting all ships but against a glass ceiling: that sort of compression makes it impossible for a kicker to stand out now the way one could 30 years ago. But that just means the best kickers actually are, in fact, less valuable today than they were 30 years ago.

      • This is kind of like interception rates for quarterbacks. On an absolute scale, Aaron Rodgers is the greatest of all time at avoiding picks. However, the difference between his int rate and the average int rate isn’t really all that great. Nothing like Gabriel, Staubach, Baugh, or even a guy as recent as Montana. At the same time, a bad int rate is especially damning in this passer friendly environment. Similarly, a bad kicker today looks really bad compared to the rest of the league than did a bad kicker in the 70s.

        • Yeah, that’s an interesting comparison. On one hand, QBs run up against something similar: a hard floor of) of 0% — just like kickers run up against that hard ceiling of 100%.

          On the other hand, there are more stats for QBs than just INTs. But if we only cared about INTs, then yea, it’d be a lot easier to stand out in an earlier era.

          But I don’t think of “easier to stand out in an earlier era” here the way I think of say, Don Hutson’s performance. As I said before, imagine a world where all kickers were at nearly 100%. Or, think of long snappers, who basically all have 100% success rates. What’s the difference between the best long snapper and the worst? Almost nothing. Which is why long snappers aren’t value. If long snappers had a much wider variance, it would be easier to stand out as a long snapper, but also, the best long snappers would be more valuable.

          So I do think the best kickers in earlier eras were more valuable than modern kickers. But I think that’s appropriate, where I’m not sure I buy that argument if you want to say, argue for Hutson over Rice.

      • LightsOut85

        Wow, that is the best response I have ever read to that question.

        But let’s say we’re not talking about how valuable a player is…in your opinion, is there a decent way to quantify ability/performance without “penalizing” modern kickers? That is, a way to account for factors that changed over time, not related to the players themselves (like training technology – being able to analyze one’s kicking motion, the way golfers do with their swing, and the soccer-style kick in it’s era).

        My gut says no, that you’d never be able to disregard the notion that there are just MORE “talented players” now (ie: better scouting, higher standards, etc). With something like QB cmp%, it’s a little more clear that there’s a non-talent variable (schemes moving more toward shorter passes, which are easier to complete) in addition to an increasing density of QB talent in the league. I’d just think that it’d be difficult given that the possible-factor is related to training/technique, and not scheme.

    • You run into this problem anytime there is an effective bound on success (as Chase touches on in the comments below). I read a recent FiveThirtyEight article positing that Serena Williams was probably not as good as other female tennis greats, because she has played in a relatively weak era for women’s tennis. Basically, according to their methodology, because of Williams’ weaker competition, for her to be keep pace with the greats of the past, she would have to win essentially every tennis match she plays, which is an almost impossible standard, given everybody has bad days.

      I don’t think this is inherently “fair” or “unfair.” It just means there is no foolproof way to compare athletes across different eras, which, to me, only makes discussion like there more interesting.

  • Clint

    Phil Dawson was 7/7 from 50+ in 2012, 6/6 from 40-49 while playing for Cleveland. It’s not a coincidence that they used the franchise tag on him two years in a row without anyone batting an eye (also, it’s the Browns). 34/49 from 50+ in his career too. Crazy.
    Is there a way to adjust for the modern era? Seems like maybe they’re getting a raw end of the stick.

    • Richie

      It is adjusted for era, isn’t it?

  • James

    Ah, Nick Folk. +2.6 in 2008, then -5 in 2009 (20th worst season ever!) and cut by the Cowboys. Then -3 in 2010, and +2.9 in 2013 with the Jets.

    Wonder how many other kickers oscilate from one list to the other.

  • Is it possible to figure out where 2016 Justin Tucker fits into this ranking?