Kicker Nirvana! FGs have become sure thing in playoffs

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Consider it ironic that in the season in which we saw the worst single-day performance by kickers in NFL history, we're now seeing the thankless craft being performed at the highest-collective level ever when it matters most.

Mason Crosby helped will the Green Bay Packers to the NFC Championship Game with a pair of 50-yard bombs in the final 98 seconds against the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday. He was the star of the day, but he was far from alone in flawless proficiency.

Some saucy KICKER HEAT from the NFL Research Team:

» Crosby's 51-yard field goal at the gun was the longest game-winning field goal in postseason history.

» Crosby's 56-yard field goal with 1:38 to play was the longest fourth-quarter field goal in postseason history.

» Dan Bailey's 52-yard field goal with 35 seconds to play is the second-longest FG with less than two minutes to play in regulation in postseason history.

» Chris Boswell's 6-for-6 night in Kansas City was the most productive performance by a kicker in playoffs history. Steelers-Chiefs was the 534th playoff game in NFL history and the first in which a team that scored multiple touchdowns lost to a team that scored none. (Good luck sleeping, Andy Reid.)

» Kickers went 21 for 21 on field goals in the divisional round and are 33 for 33 through the first two rounds of the postseason. This is the first time since at least 1991 that no field goals were missed in the wild card and divisional playoffs. We don't know what happened before 1991 because the NFL did not begin tracking such things until Blossom premiered on NBC.

* The "Blossom" thing is more of a guess.

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