Former NFL kicker Garo Yepremian died on Friday at age 70 after a yearlong bout with neuroendocrine cancer, the Garo Yepremian Foundation announced Saturday.
Yepremian had a brain tumor and other complications stemming from cancer.
The kicker played 14 seasons in the NFL from 1966-1981, including nine years with the Miami Dolphins. Yepremian kicked for the Dolphins during their Super Bowl title campaigns in 1972 and 1973.
Despite being a two-time Pro Bowler and two-time first-team All-Pro, Yepremian is perhaps best known for a blooper in Super Bowl VII against the Washington Redskins following the 1972 season. With the undefeated Dolphins up 14-0 and set to kick a field goal to make the score 17-0 late in the game, Washington blocked the kick. Yepremian attempted to pass the ball, and it fell out of his hands straight into the arms of Washington's Mike Bass, who ran 49 yards for a touchdown to cut Miami's lead to 14-7.
The Dolphins hung on for the victory, sealing a perfect 17-0 season.
Though Yepremian was known for his Super Bowl blunder, he took it in good spirit.
“Every airport you go to, people point to you and say, ‘Here’s the guy who screwed up in the Super Bowl,’” Yepremian told the Associated Press in 2007, according to the New York Times. “Fortunately, I’m a happy-go-lucky guy.”
The Garo Yepremian Foundation raises money for brain tumor research.
- Stanley Kay