There have been some absolutely incredible NFL playoff games that have provided many memorable highlights throughout the history of the NFL….but none more dramatic than the 1971 AFC Divisional Playoff game between the Miami Dolphins and the Kansas City Chiefs….in which the Dolphins QB Bob Griese completed 20 of 36 passess for 263 yards and one TD…..while the Chiefs QB Len Dawson completed 18 of 26 passes for 246 yards and one TD….when Dolphin RB’s Larry Czonka and Jim Kiick ran for 86 and 56 yards respectively and scoring one TD each….where Chiefs RB’s Wendall Hays and Ed Podolak ran for 100 and 86 yards respectively with Podolak scoring one TD.
Chiefs RB Ed Podolak is often asked about this momentous game which was played on Dec. 25, 1971….a game in which he amassed 350 total yards….still a postseason record….even though his Kansas City Chiefs lost in double overtime to the Miami Dolphins, 27-24….in the longest contest in N.F.L. history.
The game postponed Christmas dinners around the country as fans watched on television while the Chiefs and the Dolphins battled through the afternoon and into the evening. Though they were hardly aware of it as the game went on and on (and on)….the two teams….including a dozen future Hall of Famers….were involved in a contest of historical significance that went beyond its length. It was a game pitting a great team seeking a permanent place among the league’s elite against an up-and-coming squad eager for the same status…..and for Hall of Fame place kicker Jan Stenerud….it was perhaps the worst game of his illustrious career, with two field-goal attempts missed and another blocked.