While every NFL game is unpredictable, some may be more so than others.
Either through unexpected gameplay or through gameplay we’ve never seen before.
While these games are great fun, they can cause real anxiety in your world NFL betting. One of those historical games is called Music City Miracle.
This game took place on January 8, 2000 during the Wild Card playoff game of the 1999-2000 NFL playoffs. The game was between the Tennessee Titans and the Buffalo Bills and took place at the Adelphia Coliseum in Nashville, Tennessee.
The outcome of this game was affected before the game even started. Buffalo Bills coach Wade Phillips started quarterback Rob Johnson over Doug Flutie, who led the Bills to the playoffs after starting 15 games.
This was shocking news to almost everyone, especially the players who had developed a relationship with Flutie. Stats sites say this decision is the worst coaching decision in NFL history.
Although the game is mostly remembered for the ending, the game itself was a tight contest. The first quarter was scoreless and the score was 12-0 at halftime, with the Bills losing.
The Bills led 13-12 near the end of the second half.
The end of the game
The score was close in the last 6 minutes of the game, with the Bills leading 16-15. It was Steve Christie who scored the Bills and it looked like the Bills won the game.
The iconic play happened in the final 16 seconds of the game. It was called “Home Run Throwback” and was designed by special teams coordinator Alan Lowry.
Originally, Kevin Dyson was cast as a trailer for Isaac Byrd. Dyson was one of the team’s wide receivers; he wasn’t very familiar with the special team because he rarely practiced with them.
That meant head coach Jeff Fisher had to pull Dyson aside before the game and explain to him what was going to happen. Despite the crash course, Dyson performed his role perfectly.
On the final kickoff return, Titan tight end Frank Wycheck threw the ball downfield to Dyson. Dyson then ran 75 yards into the end zone for the winning touchdown. The final score was 22-16, the victory going to the Tennessee Titans.
Even though the play looked so carefully planned, Dyson didn’t have to run into the end zone. His instructions were to get the ball and go out of bounds so the Titans could score the game-winning field goal.
However, Dyson saw only Christie and Donovan Greer on the way to a touchdown. So he decided to keep running and let his Titan blockers take them down.
While it was an interesting event to watch, the replay officials wanted to review the play to see if Wycheck’s throw was legal. Fans were on the edge of their seats to hear if the score would be settled. In the end, referee Phil Luckett ruled the shot legal.
While Titans fans were happy with the outcome, Luckett had a controversial history. Luckett had 2 more controversial calls during the 1998 NFL season. The first was between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Detroit Lions; and the second was in the match between the Seattle Seahawks and the New York Jets.
Although initial footage of the throw was deemed inconclusive to overturn the referee’s decision due to players blocking the kick, NFL Films hired a computer analyst to watch the footage and provide a definitive answer.
After further investigation, a computer analyst determined that Luckett had made the correct call. They were able to prove that the shot from Wycheck was indeed a lateral pass and did not go forward.
In 2021, the Titans attempted the same play again against the Bills. Only this time an illegal decision was made.
Many Buffalo Bills fans consider this their biggest loss, despite having lost in the previous 4 Super Bowls.
Music City Miracle really shows how the outcome of a game can completely change with seconds left on the clock.
The lesson from this game is to never let your guard down and never give up.
Featured Image: Music City Miracles