Friday, November 21, 2008
By Tony Grossi
November 21, 2008
A game of inches:
Phil Dawson's game-winning field goal of 56 yards was four inches shy of going down as a 57-yarder.
The line of scrimmage was the Bills' 39. The Browns' field goal unit generally goes back 18 yards to set up a kick. But Dawson said that long snapper Ryan Pontbriand is so precise and consistent that Dawson knows that moving four inches forward gives him the best placement of the ball, with the laces in just the right spot.
Once a play begins beyond a yard-line -- even by one inch -- the official NFL statistics mark it down to the next one. So it became a 56-yard kick.
"I think I've had eight 49-yard field goals in my career," Dawson said. "Those could have been 50s instead."
The winning kick would have been good from more than 60 yards. Is a 60-yarder a career goal for Dawson?
"I don't know about that," he said. "It would have to be early in the year."