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Bengals won’t miss Stover

Posted by bengalsweb on May 25, 2011 – 1:31 pm

Word out of Baltimore via ProFootballTalk.com is that kicker Matt Stover is retiring as a Raven. Or, as he’s known around these parts, the kicker on the all-time Bengalskiller team. Stover is the fourth-leading scorer in NFL history and it seems like he kicked all of them against Cincinnati during his 18 seasons with the old Browns and new Ravens.

It will be recalled that Stover’s first winning kick came in the third game of his first season, all the way back to 1991 and the last season of head coach Sam Wyche’s run with the Bengals and Bill Belichick’s first as an NFL head coach. It was Stover’s 45-yard kick at the gun in old Municipal Stadium that allowed Belichick’s Browns to beat Wyche’s Bengals, 14-13, moments after Jim Breech’s 36-yard field had given the Bengals the lead.

How long ago was that? Boomer Esiason was the Bengals quarterback and Bernie Kosar was the Browns quarterback in the first Bengals-Browns game since the death of Paul Brown, founder of both clubs.

And Stover didn’t miss many against the Bengals in the next two decades. In 36 games against Cincinnati, Stover made 88 percent of his field goals (66 of 75) and all 88 extra points.

But it was that first one that dropped the Bengals to 0-3 and ignited Wyche’s now infamous postgame warning not to panic: “There’s golf to be played and tennis to be served up.”

Now Stover can do both and the Bengals have to be thankful.


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