The sport of football is amazing, don’t you agree? Since 1920 it's been delivering us, the viewers, with arguably the greatest live entertainment out there. I have no idea what people did between the time when they discontinued gladiator fights, to the time they invented this great sport. I mean, it has it all, modern day giants going at it against each other, men in tights for the women who appreciate a good buttocks and of course don’t forget all the excitement, adrenaline, emotion and joy involved in the road to the prestigious Lombardi trophy.
When you look at the history of football there has been many great moments. From the Music City Miracle to the David Tyree amazing clutch catch in the Super Bowl against the Patriots. It keeps giving us moments we will remember forever, and just as many moments we want to forget about as soon as possible, but most will leave you in awe. Those moments get glorified most of all, and it's justifiable as the fans always want to see all the exciting stuff. But someone has to give the moment of glory to the not so good moment, let's call them bizarre moments.
It could be hard to make a top 15 list out of 95 years of great football, but I tried my best to find the most bizarre and epic moments that have happened during those 95 wonderful years. Now I know many people have different opinions about stuff, but these incidents will leave you scratching your heads just like it left the players and coaches alike. They say what’s sunshine without a little rain? Well here are the moments of rain that when looked up on from the side you can kind of see a rainbow in there. Hopefully people who are responsible for these incident can look back at it and smile just like us fans can.
15 Dan Connolly's 71 Yard Kick Return
Offensive line is arguably the most demanding yet under-appreciated position in the NFL. Connolly was trying to stand out. In a 2010 match up against the Green Bay Packers, Connolly was preparing to block for the returner on a kick off but the ball was kicked short. The kick made it right to Connolly, and he realized, that's his moment to shine. While holding the football like a loaf of bread weaving through Packers traffic he scrambled for 71 yards to the Green Bay 4 yard line helping set up Brady and company with great field position. Who said linemen aren't athletes?
14 Vikings Clock Runs Out - 2003 NFL Draft
The draft is a very exciting event, sometimes just as exciting as the games. It's where the teams are trying to secure their future by drafting the right player for them. In 2003 the Minnesota Vikings apparently forgot they had a time limit in which they had to choose. The Vikings had the 7th overall pick but reportedly wanted to work out a deal to trade down. That didn't go as planned and due to unknown reasons the trade didn't go through and the Vikings ran out of time. When the Jaguars realized what happened they wasted no time with submitting their draft choice, Byron Leftwich. Originally picking at 9, Carolina wasn't missing out on such rare opportunity and they selected Jordan Gross. Only then did the Vikings realized what had happened and rushed to make their choice, Kevin Williams.
13 Joe Theismann Injury
Injuries are quite common in the NFL, after all the sport itself is very violent. Not often do you see an injury as gruesome as Joe Thiesmenn's was. It was a 1985 divisional match up between the Washington Redskins and New York Giants. At the time Lawrance Taylor was forming and establishing himself as the most feared and dominating defenders in the NFL. Theismann found out why. Ball snapped, quarterback hands the ball to the running back, it's a trick play, flea flicker, quarterback gets the ball back, but Taylor wasn't being fooled by it what so ever, he proceeded to sack the QB.
If you look at Taylor's reaction after the play was over you would understand, how devastating and bizarre the injury was. Taylor landed on the back of Theisman's leg, in the shin area and, completely snapped both bones in his leg causing a compound fracture. Theismann never played another down of football after that.
12 Nuts Over Brains?
With today's technology developing at a rapid pace we can't help but notice, how much damage NFL players take, so it's only logical to think that protection is key for this sort of sport. But apparently that wasn't the case for the NFL. The jockstrap was invented in 1888 to of course protect what is arguably a man's most important organ, but I guess they forgot about the brain. The first football helmet wasn't invented until eight years later, and the face bar as we know now wasn't applied on the helmet until the 1930s. Needless to say, we all know what men would protect first when it comes down to it.
11 "We Want The Ball And We're Going to Score"
In the NFL confidence is good. But when you can't back it up that may lead to some bad consequences or like in our case, a pretty bizarre outcome. During the first round of the 2003-04 playoffs, Seattle squared off against Green Bay in Lambeau field. It was an even game as both teams came into it sitting at 10-6. After a 1-yard TD from Seattle running back Shaun Alexander the game was tied up at 27. This is where the fun begins.
Matt Hasselbeck was a captain on the coin toss. When he won the coin toss he proceeded to make his selection while using this famous sentence NFL fans will never forget, "We want the ball and we're going to score!" which is pretty bizarre as it is. Matters got worse quick, as on the Seahawks' first possession of overtime Hasselbeck threw an interception to Green Bay defender Al Harris who returned it 52 yards for a touchdown to secure the overtime win. Talk about the ultimate case of eating your words.
10 Punter Meets Antonio Brown's Cleat
Things get intense during divisional matchups in the NFL, and this 2014 Cleveland/ Pittsburgh clash was no different. Antonio Brown on the up rise as being one of the best receivers in the NFL using a combination of sharp route running, sure hands, speed and agility. He also returned punts. On one of the punts in the game he fielded the punt on his own 28 yard and proceeded to make moves in an attempt to score. After a few nice moves he looked like he was going to put 6 on the board for his team, but then Cleveland punter comes into play.
Lanning, who was the punter for Cleveland wasn't going to let that happen, and that's when Antonio Brown decided it was in his best interest to transform into Gerald Butler in the movie 300 and spartan kick Lanning right in the helmet. Unfortunately Brown's cleat was caught and thus ending Brown's chances of scoring. Bizarre nonetheless.
9 Patriots Elect To Kick In Overtime
It's common sense that if you win the toss for overtime, you elect to receive, otherwise you're letting the other team get a chance to win that they wouldn't have. Apparently Belichick had a case of the Hasselbeck confidence syndrome and decided to let the Jets get the ball to begin overtime. Now assuming New York only scores a field goal the Patriots are in great position, correct? Well that wasn't the case at all. Fitzpatrick connected on a couple of nice throws to Enunwa and Marshall to set up the Jets in great position leading to a perfect fade to Decker to seal the game.
8 Darius Reynaud Starts The Season with a Safety
It must have been nerve racking for Reynaud, you can forget your cleats to game one of the season, you can forget some arm bands and other equipment, but you should never, and I emphasize never, forget the rules of football, especially if you play in the NFL and make the big bucks. On the opening kick off of the 2013 season he also decided to be generous by handing the Steelers two free points to start the game. Reynaud fielded the kick off with his foot out of the end zone and then immediately returned into the end zone and took a knee. After a discussion with the officials they decided it indeed was a safety. To make this more bizarre, that turned out to be the fastest scored points in NFL history. What a way to start a season.
7 River City Relay
In a 2003 match up between the Jacksonville Jaguars and the New Orleans Saints the Saints executed the most perfect improvised play. Quarterback Aaron Brooks snapped the ball and passed it to Donté Stallworth who ran for a while before he lateraled the ball to Michael Lewis, who lateraled it to Deuce McAllister who then by some miracle as he's getting hit passed it back to Jerome Pathon for the score. What looked like the play that tied up the game for the saints went sour very quickly, because on the ensuring play, Saints kicker John Carney missed the extra point. The Saints lost the game 20-19. The loss eliminated the Saints from playoff contention. Who says kickers don't matter?
6 Seattle Chooses To Pass From The Goalline
Super Bowl XLIX is going to go down in history as one of the greatest Super Bowls ever played. The Seahawks found themselves down four after a touchdown pass from Brady to Edelman. Wilson and company got the football with 2:02 left on the clock with all three time outs available to them. Russell Wilson orchestrated a great drive completing a pass of 31 yards to Marshawn Lynch to start the drive followed by a couple incomplete passes. Wilson aired one out to Jermaine Kearse who came through in the clutch and made an amazing grab, something in the David Tyree class.
After a run by Lynch the Seahawks were facing a 2nd & goal from the 1-yard line. What happened next is to this day inexplicable. The Seahawks call a passing play and Wilson throws the ball. Patriots defender Malcolm Butler 100% trusted his instincts and undercut the route resulting in a pick, and thus winning the game for New England.
5 Colts Bizarre Formation vs. New England
Trick plays are one of the most exciting play in football, if they are executed properly. The Colts clearly had the right idea, they knew they couldn't beat the Patriots conventionally, so they had to dig into their beg of tricks. The Colts went for it on 4th down, and decided its time for their magic play from their magic trick book. Too bad New England defenders weren't confused. They looked confident and applied the required adjustments to defend the play. If you are the snapper and the coach says "don't snap the ball, just try to draw them offside". DO NOT snap the ball, but he did, otherwise it wouldn't be on the list. Anderson said hut, the snapper snapped the ball and within a fraction of a second he was tackled by Patriots defenders.
4 Chicago Bears 3 Consecutive Ties
Evolution is part of life, so it's applicable pretty much to anything, for example football rules. In 1932, when there was no Lombardi trophy, when there was no Super Bowl, when draws didn't count towards the winning percentage, the team with the highest percentage won. So it clearly didn't bother the bears when they had three consecutive games end up with a tie. The Bears went on to have six ties in total that season and finishing the season 6-1-6, but because ties didn't count in the record, they officially had an identical 6-1 record with the Portsmouth Spartans. The league scheduled its first ever playoff game which the Bears won 9-0 and won the NFL season championship.
3 Miracle In The Meadowlands
Nowadays we take the kneel down for granted. But it wasn't always this way. Before this incident the kneel down was uncommon and no one used it, they just fell on their back as if they are giving up. Well in this game that didn't work out for the Giants. In the winding seconds of a match between the Eagles and Giants, the Giants were sitting pretty at 17-12 with the ball in their hands. On one of the quarterbacks "fall downs" he was hit by a defender and the Giants didn't take too fondly of it, so they decided to get them by running on them. It worked the first time, and on the second handoff everything went horrible, the quarterback and fullback was off, resulting in a fumble that was picked up by the Eagles and returned to the house to win the game 19-17.
2 Kneel Or Spike? Kneel
Kirk Cousins was one of the surprises in 2015 when he led Washington to a division title, but it wasn't all fun and games for Mr. "YOU LIKE THAT!". In a divisional matchup against the Eagles, the Redskins got the ball with some time left right before the half. Washington drove it into Eagles territory and after a penalty on Eagles for delay of game, there were 6 seconds left for Washington and no timeouts. Cousins' options were simple; throw into the endzone and hope for a touchdown or just spike the ball to stop the clock that would start running because of the penalty and go kick a field goal. Cousins decides option number 3 is the best for his team and takes a kneel down, thus ending the first half.
1 The Coin That Doesn't Flip
It's fresh in our minds, so perhaps that's why it stands out the most. After an intense match up between Arizona and Green Bay, the Divisional Round game was headed to overtime. Just when we thought we have seen everything, this happens. Now, I sat here in my chair and tossed a coin, not even trying to flip it, and every time it at least did one rotation. Apparently the coin that referee Clete Blakeman was using had an anti physics feature in it. Blakeman tossed the coin, but all the coin did was, make its way to the ground without any rotation. It looked like a Frisbee on a smooth landing. Blakeman was as shocked as we were, and the Packer players were angry with the outcome so Blakeman decided it's only fair to reflip the coin, even though the rules don't state the coin has to flip. Once again the Cardinals won the toss, elected to receive. A few plays later they were the winners advancing to the conference championship.