Sept. 13, 1992 – The Bills and San Francisco 49ers never played each other in a Super Bowl when they were piling up wins in the late 1980s and early 1990s. At one point, one or the other took part in seven straight Super Bowls. We all received a preview of what such a game between them might have been like when they met in San Francisco in the regular season.
The matchup turned out to be one of the most exciting games ever played. Start with one fact: Neither team punted. It was the first game in NFL history that didn’t have a punt.
Buffalo quarterback Jim Kelly and San Francisco counterpart Steve Young both threw for more than 400 yards, the second time that had ever happened. The two teams combined for 1,086 yards in total offense, the second-greatest total ever at the time. Kelly went past 20,000 passing yards for his career.
Naturally, the game featured a dramatic finish. Mike Cofer of the Niners missed a 47-yard field goal in the final minute to give the Bills a 34-31 win.
It was part of a 4-0 start by the Bills. One of the most overlooked qualities of those Buffalo teams from the early 1990s is that they usually got out of the starting gate quite well. Perhaps those training camps run by Marv Levy that were less taxing than other teams' camps paid off in a fresh team in September.
Budd Bailey is a retired sports reporter and editor at The Buffalo News. He is also the author of "Today in Buffalo Sports History." Learn more about the book here.
Story topics: This Day in Bills' History