On this Day: Tom Dempsey kicks a game-winning 63-yard field goal

New Orleans Saints’ Tom Dempsey, 19, who is missing a hand and part of his right foot, moves up to kick a 63-yard field goal in New Orleans November 8, 1970. The record-setting kick, with 2 seconds left in the game, gave the Saints an upset 19-17 win over the Detroit Lions. Lions Alex Karras, 71, rushes the kicker and Saints Bill Cody, 66, blocks while Joe Scarpati, 21, holds the ball. (AP Photo/files)

NEW ORLEANS – On this day 49 years ago, New Orleans Saints kicker Tom Dempsey stepped up to the ball and booted a 63-yard field goal to give the Saints a win and cement his place in the history books.

Dempsey, who was born without toes on his right foot and without fingers on his right hand, wore a specially designed shoe with a flattened front.

On November 8, 1970, the Saints were losing to the Detroit Lions as time ran out, and Dempsey’s longshot field goal attempt was the team’s only hope for a walk off victory.

Dempsey set an NFL record that day that would stand until 2013, when Matt Prater landed a 64-yard field goal.

The New Orleans Saints posted video of the monumental kick:


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