most unbelievable catches in NFL history

The NFL has delivered some of the biggest and most iconic moments in American sports history. We will look at the top catches from the game’s history today. In addition, we will settle on what we think is the greatest catch in the history of the NFL.

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10 – Oronde Gadsden – NY Jets vs Miami Dolphins – 2002

Starting at the top and working our way down, Gadsden’s one-handed catch was one of the year’s top plays. The catch occurred in a fairly meaningless game but is considered one of the greatest. We might have placed it much higher on the list if it took place on a bigger stage.

9 – Mario Manningham – Super Bowl XLVI

Due to the magnitude of the game and the quality of the throw, Manningham’s catch was one of the big moments in 21st century Super Bowls. He still had a lot to do. Let’s not pretend Eli Manning was the only piece of this puzzle. Manningham knew that he would take a big hit to put his body on the line, but he did it anyway, and it was the catalyst which spurred the New York Giants to victory and to lift the trophy.

8 – Franco Harris – Pittsburgh Steelers vs Oakland – 1972

The legendary Terry Bradshaw instigated this astonishing play. His initial throw fell short and bounced off the helmet of an Oakland player and right into the hands of Franco Harris. While it may not be as athletic or mind-blowing as some of the others we have already mentioned, it is still a remarkable moment as Harris charged through the Oakland defensive line and won the playoff game.

7 – Lynn Swann – Super Bowl X

Wide receivers are famed for their athleticism, flexibility, and ability to focus at key moments in a game to take their team over the finish line. The Super Bowl in 1976 was a perfect example of this. Swann leapt into the air and maintained a laser focus as he plucked the ball out of the sky mid-air before perfectly executing his landing. This was just one of many examples why Swann is considered one of the greatest wide receivers of his generation.

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6 – Antonio Freeman – Packers vs Vikings – 2000

Freeman is in the Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame for a reason. Brett Favre orchestrated the quality of the catch by throwing the ball to Freeman when he wasn’t in a position to receive the ball openly. Freeman managed to scramble to his feet despite being outnumbered. He then took the ball over the line to score a touchdown, seemingly against all odds.

5 – Odell Beckham Jr – Giants vs Cowboys – 2014

OBJ is one of the most popular and highly paid modern-day players. He maintains sensational levels of popularity online and is one of the crossover NFL stars in the sport today. One reason for this was this iconic one-handed catch against the Giants back in 2014. The clip went viral and is one of the most iconic moments from the NFL in the last decade.

4 – Dwight Clarke – 49ers vs Cowboys – 1981

When one specific play is widely referred to as “The Catch”, you know it is a special moment in the NFL timeline. It marked a notable crossover at the end of the Cowboys’ reign and the beginning of the 49ers’ reign.

3 – Santonio Holmes – Super Bowl XLIII

As we enter the business end of this list, the final three catches are all game-defining catches that shaped the history of the teams and players involved. Clinching the Superbowl for his team by showing dazzling footwork, this catch is considered one of the greatest of all time for a reason.

2 – Justin Jefferson – Vikings vs Buffalo Bills – 2022

This catch is high on the list, considering it only took place this year and didn’t clinch a Superbowl like Santonio Holmes’s catch did. However, it did clinch the game dramatically, with the Vikings facing fourth-and-18 and four points behind. This one-handed catch deserves a place on this list.

1 – David Tyree – Super Bowl XLII

As far as huge catches go, it doesn’t get much bigger than the final minutes of the Super Bowl. There was heightened tension and excitement as it took place in the game’s final stages and halted the Patriots’ perfect season. Many analysts agree that this is arguably the greatest Super Bowl game.

Golam Muktadir is a passionate sports fan and a dedicated movie buff. He has been writing about both topics for over a decade and has a wealth of knowledge and experience to share with his readers. Muktadir has a degree in journalism and has written for several well-known publications, including Surprise Sports and Surprise Movies.


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