Nearly a dozen years later, the Boise State football team’s arsenal of trick plays employed against Oklahoma in the 2007 Fiesta Bowl are inspiring even the game’s best.
The Miami Dolphins beat the New England Patriots 34-33 on Sunday in Miami thanks to a 69-yard touchdown by running back Kenyan Drake as time expired. The play involved two laterals, with Drake taking the last one and finding running room for the final 52 yards.
It was reminiscent of Boise State’s “Circus” play to force overtime against the Sooners. In fact, Dolphins players said the play was called “Boise.”
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“You rep it in practice over and over,” receiver Kenny Stills told the Miami Herald. “Sometimes it’s like, ‘Why are we doing this?’ And now we know why.”
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According to NESN’s Zack Cox, quarterback Ryan Tannehill said Boise State ran it “a little cleaner.” The Broncos scored when Drisan James pitched to Jerard Rabb, and the receiver raced for a 50-yard touchdown with 7 seconds remaining. The Palm Beach Post’s Joe Schad said the team practiced it on Friday.
And not to be outdone, later Sunday afternoon, the Steelers ran a play even more like Circus, to the same side of the field and with the one lateral, and even a running back tailing like Ian Johnson did on New Year’s Day, 2007. Trailing 24-21, James Washington took a Ben Roethlisberger pass and pitched to JuJu Smith-Schuster, who was pushed out of bounds with 5 seconds to play at the Raiders’ 22-yard line for a 48-yard pickup.
However, again honoring Boise State, but in the most negative sense, kicker Chris Boswell missed the field goal as time expired, failing to send the game to overtime on the road.