San Diego's Cromartie sets NFL record with 109-yard FG return

MINNEAPOLIS -- San Diego cornerback Antonio Cromartie returned a missed field goal 109 yards for a touchdown as the first half ended Sunday at Minnesota - the longest play in NFL history.

The Vikings lined Ryan Longwell up for a 57-yard kick, which was on line but fell just short of the crossbar. Cromartie, camped out at the end line, leaped to catch the ball without stepping out of bounds and started his return.

He raced up the right sideline, got some good blocks and scored untouched to give the Chargers a 14-7 lead into the locker room. Vikings coach Brad Childress was so upset he chucked his headset off and was so flustered he started to leave the sideline before realizing there was still an extra point attempt.

The previous record for longest play was 108 yards, missed field goal returns, shared by Chicago teammates Devin Hester and Nathan Vasher and a kickoff return by New England's Ellis Hobbs.

Cromartie scored two touchdowns last week against the Houston Texans -- a fumble recovery in the end zone and a 70-yard interception return.

Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press

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