TIL of Tom Dempsey, an NFL kicker for the New Orleans Saints, born with no toes on his kicking foot. He held an NFL record, standing for over 40 years, for kicking a 63 yard field goal. ESPN Sport Science found the modified shoe (that caused some controversy) actually increased his margin of error.

Read more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tom_Dempsey

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  1. In 1977, the NFL added the “Tom Dempsey Rule”, stating “any shoe that is worn by a player with an artificial limb on his kicking leg must have a kicking surface that conforms to that of a normal kicking shoe.”

  2. It sounds like what happened is the lack of toes caused the rest of his leg to compensate to keep balance, resulting in over-developed calf and hemstring muscles. The shoe was never the issue, he just kicked like a mule.

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