The best of the best meet in the Super Bowl in Florida. Before the big game kicks off, let's take a moment to look at the worst of the worst NFL Kickers: these guys make this list for a variety of reasons, but mainly it was their inaccuracy over a prolonged stretch of time that doomed their professional careers.
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All-Time Worst Kickers in the NFL
These guys missed an absurd amount of field goals during their playing days, and it is surprising that some of them lasted as long as they did in the NFL. Today's NFL would never see kickers with career FG percentages that the men on this list have last longer than a year or two.
10. Mark Moseley - 1970-1986
It's odd that the only kicker in NFL history to win the league MVP begins this list, but Mark Moseley was nothing more than a bad kicker who had one extraordinary season. Moseley's MVP came in the strike-shortened 1982 campaign as he went 20-for-21 on FG attempts and helped the Redskins win a Super Bowl.
But even with that year of hitting on 95.2% of his attempts, Moseley still retired with a career 65.6% success rate on field goals. That stat alone goes to show you just how over his head Moseley played in 1982, and as memorable as it was, it masks the true career this sub-par kicker had.
9. Bob Timberlake - 1965
Timberlake was a local hero in Michigan when he was the QB for the Wolverines and led them to a Big Ten title in 1964 after going 14 years without. He capped off his final collegiate season with a win in the Rose Bowl and finished 4th in the Heisman voting. But after failing to win the QB job with the New York Giants the next year, Timberlake became the team's kicker after an injury and it was the beginning of the end for him.
Timberlake made his first FG attempt, but then followed that up with 14 straight misses. That 6% success rate saw him get cut before the 1966 season began and he never saw the NFL field again.
8. Eric Schubert - 1985-87
Schubert was another NFL kicker that peaked during his collegiate days at the University of Pittsburgh. Known for his strong leg in college, Schubert would try FG's from anywhere within reason, but would be someone who simply never had the accuracy to stay in the league.
He bounced around to play for three different NFL teams during his three-year career (Giants, Cardinals, Patriots), and his 3-for-11 mark (27.3%) in 1986 while with the Cardinals is one of the worst single-season kicking performances of all time.
7. Scott Norwood - 1985-1991
Norwood doesn't have the poor career numbers that many of these other guys do, but he still deserves a spot on this list for two simple words: Wide Right. Norwood will always be remembered for the FG he missed to win Super Bowl 25 for the Bills and many still argue that this missed kick sparked the run of choking the Bills had in the Super Bowl the next three years. Who knows how history is dramatically changed for Buffalo Bills fans had he made the kick and it will live in infamy forever. Norwood's career 72.3% success rate on field goals isn't horrific by any means, but he was below 70% in four of his seven seasons.
6. Neil O'Donoghue - 1977-1985
O'Donoghue kicked for 8+ years in the NFL and only made more than 66% of his FG's once. He was a career 59.3% kicker having made 112 of his 189 career attempts, but like Scott Norwood his most remembered for his misses at key times.
O'Donoghue missed a game-winning FG in the final game of the 1984 season that would have sent the Cardinals to the playoffs, and he also missed three FG tries in OT on MNF in 1983 in a game that wound up finishing as a tie. With a career 70-for-139 (50.3%) mark on kicks from 30 yards or deeper, it's a wonder he managed to stay in the NFL for eight years.
5. Pat Summerall - 1952-1961
Summerall made his name in the NFL as a legendary broadcaster in the 1980's through early 2000's, as many preferred to forget his career as a player. Summerall was one of the few kickers in the 1950's and 60's that was considered a "specialist" in that he didn't really play another position, and he wasn't exactly great at it.
Summerall made 100 of his 212 career field goal attempts, good for a 47.2%. Only twice in his nine seasons did he make more than 50% of his tries and his 47.2% career mark still stands as the fourth worst all-time from those with significant attempts.
4. Paul Hornung - 1957-1966
It's rare to have a NFL Hall-of-Famer on this list, but Hornung was inducted into the Hall for his stellar career as a running back for the Green Bay Packers. He was often thrust into double duty as the team's kicker and never showed the same talent kicking the ball as he did running with it.
Hornung finished his career with a 47.1% career FG mark, hitting on only 66 of his 140 career tries. That number is the third worst mark in NFL history to this day.
3. Happy Feller - 1971-1973
Feller had a tremendous collegiate career at the University of Texas in the late-1960's, and was a member of two National Championship teams in 1969 and 1970. That career prompted the Philadelphia Eagles to draft Feller in the 4th round of the 1971 draft - a pick they would ultimately have wanted back.
Feller played just one year in Philly before moving onto New Orleans for two years, but his 16-for-43 (37.2%) accuracy rate on field goals during his professional playing days remains one of the worst percentages in the history of the game.
2. Tommy Davis - 1959-1969
For 10 years Tommy Davis specialized in the kicking game for the San Francisco 49ers, but there was nothing special about his results. He's got the worst career FG% in the history of the NFL for players that only kicked on the field with a 47.1% mark.
Davis only made 130 of his 276 career FG attempts, and never had a year of better than 63%. He was especially bad from any kick beyond 20 yards as his career numbers from that distance or beyond were horrific by today's standards. Davis went 90-for- 227 in his career on kicks from 20 yards out or further, good for a 39.6% rate.
1. Wayne Walker - 1958-1972
Walker was another NFL player from this era that counted kicking as his second job as he was a solid LB for the Detroit Lions during his 15-year career. For much of the early 60's Walker was the team's kicker as well and it's surprising they kept him in that role for so long.
Walker hit on just 53 of his 131 career FG attempts (40.5%), and had some very bad years along the way. He went 9-for-22 in his first two full seasons in the kicking role, and followed that up with years of 2-for-8, 5-for-15, and 8-for-22 among others. His career mark of 40.5% is the worst all-time in NFL history.