What Are the 3 Longest Field Goals in NFL History: Celebrating Record-Breaking Kicks

John Rizzo

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In the grand tapestry of NFL history, where colossal athletes engage in feats of strength, strategy, and precision, the seemingly humble field goal holds a special place.

Among the numerous records etched in the annals of this sport, few are as awe-inspiring as the longest field goals ever made.

These kicks are not merely displays of raw power but a testament to the unwavering determination, skill, and unwavering focus of the kickers who achieve them.

In this narrative of gridiron glory, we explore the three longest field goals in NFL history, each one a moment of sheer brilliance, where a kicker defied the odds and etched their name into the hallowed pages of the game’s heritage.

What Are the 3 Longest Field Goals in NFL History?

The NFL, National Football League, has a rich history filled with incredible moments, but one of the most awe-inspiring feats in the sport is the ability of kickers to send the football soaring through the uprights from impressive distances.

The longest field goals in NFL history stand as a testament to the skill, precision, and power of these remarkable athletes.

Let’s delve into the three longest field goals ever made in the NFL:

Justin Tucker – 66 Yards (2021)

Justin Tucker - 66 Yards (2021)

Justin Tucker, the Baltimore Ravens’ star kicker, etched his name into NFL history on September 26, 2021. In a game against the Detroit Lions, Tucker’s team was trailing, and the game’s outcome hung in the balance.

With seconds remaining, Tucker stepped onto the field and unleashed a 66-yard field goal attempt. The stadium held its breath as the ball sailed toward the uprights. It hit the crossbar and bounced through, securing a dramatic 19-17 victory for the Ravens.

his monumental kick, setting a new NFL record, not only showcased Tucker’s incredible leg strength but also solidified his reputation as one of the greatest kickers in the league.

Matt Prater – 64 Yards (2013)

Matt Prater, a former kicker for the Denver Broncos, made his mark in the NFL record books on December 8, 2013. In a game against the Tennessee Titans, Prater had the advantage of playing at high altitude in Denver, where the thinner air can aid in longer kicks.

Taking full advantage of the favorable conditions, Prater unleashed a 64-yard field goal attempt just before halftime. The ball sailed through the uprights, surpassing the previous record of 63 yards and leaving spectators in awe.

Prater’s kick solidified his place in NFL history as one of the league’s most elite kickers.

Tom Dempsey, Jason Elam, Sebastian Janikowski, David Akers, Graham Gano, and Brett Maher – 63 Yards

The third spot on the list is a shared honor among six remarkable kickers who all successfully made 63-yard field goals. These kicks showcase the rare but incredible ability to kick from such a remarkable distance.

  • Tom Dempsey’s historic kick took place on November 8, 1970, when he kicked a 63-yard field goal for the New Orleans Saints. Remarkably, Dempsey was born with a deformed right foot and wore a special shoe for kicking, making his achievement even more inspiring.
  • Jason Elam joined the 63-yard club on October 25, 1998, while playing for the Denver Broncos in a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
  • Sebastian Janikowski’s 63-yard field goal was made on September 12, 2011, for the Oakland Raiders against the Denver Broncos. This kick was significant because it was the first 63-yarder made at sea level.
  • David Akers, a kicker for the San Francisco 49ers, booted a 63-yard field goal on September 9, 2012, in a game against the Green Bay Packers.
  • Graham Gano added his name to the list on October 7, 2018, with a 63-yard game-winning field goal for the Carolina Panthers against the New York Giants.
  • Brett Maher, playing for the Dallas Cowboys, made his 63-yard field goal on October 20, 2019, against the Philadelphia Eagles. This feat made him the first kicker to achieve three field goals of 60 yards or more in his career.

Are There Any Other Notable Long Field Goals in NFL History?

Yes, besides the three longest field goals mentioned earlier, there have been other notable long field goals in NFL history. While they may not have broken the record, they are still impressive and hold significance in the league’s history.

Here are a few:

Brett Maher – 62 Yards (2019)

Brett Maher - 62 Yards (2019)

Brett Maher, while playing for the Dallas Cowboys, made a 62-yard field goal in a game against the Philadelphia Eagles on October 20, 2019. At the time, this tied for the third-longest field goal in NFL history.

Graham Geno – 62 Yards (1968)

Graham Geno, a kicker for the Denver Broncos, made a 62-yard field goal on November 17, 1968, against the Buffalo Bills. This kick tied for the third-longest field goal in the NFL at that time.

Brett Maher – 62 Yards (2018)

Maher, during his rookie season with the Cowboys, made another 62-yard field goal on October 14, 2018, against the Jacksonville Jaguars. This kick was significant because it tied the record for the longest field goal made by a rookie in NFL history.

Jason Sanders – 62 Yards (2021)

In a game between the Miami Dolphins and the Las Vegas Raiders on December 26, 2021, Jason Sanders made a 62-yard field goal. While it didn’t set a new record, it was a remarkable achievement.

Kickers with 61-yard Field Goals

Several kickers have made 61-yard field goals in NFL history, including Stephen Gostkowski, Graham Gano, Sebastian Janikowski, and Tom Dempsey, among others.

What Are the Key Factors in Kicking Long Field Goals in the NFL?

Kicking long field goals in the NFL is a remarkable feat that requires a combination of skill, strength, and precision.

Here are the key factors that play a pivotal role in kicking long field goals in the NFL:

Leg Strength

The most fundamental factor for kicking long field goals is leg strength. NFL kickers possess powerful leg muscles that allow them to generate the force needed to propel the football over long distances. Building leg strength is a critical part of a kicker’s training regimen.


While distance is essential, accuracy is equally crucial. Kickers must strike the ball cleanly and accurately to ensure it travels in the right direction and passes through the uprights. Consistency in hitting the sweet spot is vital for success.



The proper kicking technique is key. Kickers have a distinct approach and follow-through that must be consistent for each kick. Their technique helps control the height and trajectory of the ball, factors that are vital in long-field goal attempts.

Mental Focus

Kicking long field goals can be mentally taxing. Kickers need exceptional concentration and composure, especially in high-pressure situations. They must block out distractions and focus on executing the kick with precision.

Wind Conditions

Weather conditions, especially wind, can significantly affect field goal attempts. Understanding the wind’s speed and direction is crucial.

Kickers often adapt their approach and angle to compensate for wind patterns. A strong crosswind, for example, may require the ball to be aimed slightly off-center.

Field Surface

The condition of the field surface matters. A well-maintained, firm field provides a stable base for the kicker, allowing for a more consistent approach and follow-through. In contrast, a muddy or uneven field can pose challenges.


Stadiums at higher altitudes have thinner air, which reduces air resistance and allows the ball to travel farther. Kickers often have an advantage in these conditions, as the reduced air density can aid in reaching longer distances.


Kickers use specialized cleats and shoes designed to enhance grip, control, and power. The choice of footwear is essential in maximizing the effectiveness of their kicks.

Holder and Snapper

The quality of the holder and snapper on the field goal unit is critical. A clean snap and precise ball placement ensure that the kicker has the best possible conditions for success.

Game Situation

The score and game situation can influence the decision to attempt a long-field goal. Coaches and kickers must assess the risk and reward of a long kick, as missing can result in giving the opponent a favorable field position.


Kicking long field goals in the NFL is a skill that develops with experience. Veteran kickers understand the nuances of different stadiums and how to adapt their technique to varying conditions.

Practice and Preparation

Continuous practice is the foundation of a kicker’s success. NFL kickers put in countless hours honing their skills, fine-tuning their technique, and preparing for a variety of game scenarios.


Who holds the record for the longest field goal in the NFL?

Justin Tucker holds the record for the longest field goal in the NFL, with a 66-yard kick achieved in 2021 while playing for the Baltimore Ravens.

What are the odds of successfully making a field goal from over 60 yards in the NFL?

The odds of successfully making a field goal from over 60 yards in the NFL are quite low, with a historical success rate of around 10% or less.

What are the implications of breaking the NFL record for the longest field goal?

Breaking the NFL record for the longest field goal brings fame, recognition, and a place in history for the kicker, while also boosting team morale and potentially securing victory.

What is the longest field goal range in the NFL?

The longest field goal range in the NFL is 66 yards, achieved by Justin Tucker in 2021 while playing for the Baltimore Ravens.

Who are some of the most iconic kickers in NFL history known for their long-distance kicks?

Iconic NFL kickers renowned for long-distance kicks include Justin Tucker, Matt Prater, Tom Dempsey, Jason Elam, Sebastian Janikowski, and David Akers, among others.

To Recap

In the NFL, where athleticism, strategy, and spectacle combine to create memorable moments, the longest field goals in its history stand as a testament to human excellence.

From the remarkable 66-yard record-setting boot by Justin Tucker to the 64-yard precision of Matt Prater, and the legendary 63-yard kicks shared by six exceptional kickers, these achievements are more than just statistics.

They embody the indomitable spirit of the game, the unwavering dedication to perfection, and the sheer audacity to push the boundaries of what is possible.

As the years pass and new records beckon, these extraordinary feats remain a source of inspiration, reminding us that in the NFL, as in life, excellence is achieved through skill, determination, and the relentless pursuit of greatness.

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John Rizzo

I am a professional rugby player in the Washington DC-Baltimore area. I have been playing rugby for over 10 years and have had the opportunity to play in many different countries. I am also a coach for both youth and adult rugby teams. I graduated from Johns Hopkins University with a degree in Sports Management and Marketing. I am currently working on my MPA from American University and plan to pursue this career path after graduating next year. LinkedIn

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