"I said, I think I can get it there,' " said Elam, "and he said, 'O.K., kick it.' "
In addition to tying Dempsey's dusty mark, Elam set an unofficial record for Most Media Attention Ever Paid to a Kicker. Long after every other Bronco was showered, dressed and out the door, he was still in uniform, reliving his feat. To monitor these interviews was to learn that Elam has kicked field goals of as much as 72 yards in practice; that he has kicked in the same shoe—a Nike Tiempo, size 10, with kangaroo-leather instep—for at least six years; that before lining up he had noted that the streamers attached to the tops of the uprights hung limp. "There was no wind," he said.
Of course there was no wind. Not on this afternoon. Not in the Year of the Bronco.