Punts of 80 yards or more are rare. When they do occur, they tend to be more fluky than anything. Sure, it takes a big leg to kick the ball that far, but most punts of staggering yardage tend to be aided by big bounces and long rolls. Not this one.
In Sunday's game against the Chicago Bears, Oakland Raiders punter Shane Lechler, the NFL all-time leader in punting average, booted a ball 80 yards from kick to landing. Officially it counted as an 80-yard punt too, one that Lechler says was one of the 10 best he's ever hit, whether it be in practice or a game.
Lechler told reporters he saw Bears return specialist Devin Hester moving up to field the punt, so he decided to hit it over his head, as if it's just that easy.
"I hit that one perfect," he said.
The punt was a Raiders team record and even impressed the impressive Mr. Hester.
"First time in history I've seen somebody kick an 80-yard punt that was in the air, not just a good roll where somebody might kick a ball 50 yards and roll a good 30," Hester said. "I was about 55 yards deep, and he still boomed it over my head."
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