1995 NFL season

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1995 National Football League season
Regular season
Duration September 3 – December 25, 1995
Playoffs
Start date December 30, 1995
AFC Champions Pittsburgh Steelers
NFC Champions Dallas Cowboys
Super Bowl XXX
Date January 28, 1996
Site Sun Devil Stadium, Tempe, Arizona
Champions Dallas Cowboys
Pro Bowl
Date February 4, 1996
Site Aloha Stadium
National Football League seasons
 < 1994 1996 > 

The 1995 NFL season was the 76th regular season of the National Football League. The league expanded to 30 teams with the addition of the Carolina Panthers and the Jacksonville Jaguars. The two expansion teams were slotted into the two remaining divisions that had only four teams (while the other four had five teams): the AFC Central (Jaguars) and the NFC West (Panthers).

Meanwhile, the two teams in Los Angeles relocated to other cities: the Rams transferred to St. Louis and the Raiders moved back to Oakland. During the course of the season it emerged that the Cleveland Browns would relocate to Baltimore for the 1996 season. The Raiders move was not announced until after the schedule had been announced, which resulted in a problem in the third week of the season when both the Raiders and the San Francisco 49ers had games scheduled to air on NBC which ended up overlapping each other (the Raiders game was scheduled for 1 PM in case they were to move and NBC was given the doubleheader so that both Bay Area teams had their games televised locally).

The season ended with Super Bowl XXX when the Dallas Cowboys defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers to become the first team in NFL history to win three Super Bowls in four years.

Major rule changes[edit]

  • An eligible receiver forced out of bounds by a defensive player may return to the field and automatically become eligible to legally be the first player to touch a forward pass.
  • Quarterbacks may now receive communications from the bench from a small radio receiver in their helmets, partly repealing a rule that had been in force since 1956

Final regular season standings[edit]

W = Wins, L = Losses, PCT = Winning Percentage, PF= Points For, PA = Points Against. Clinched playoff seeds are marked in parentheses and shaded in green. No ties occurred this season.

AFC East
Team W L PCT PF PA
(3) Buffalo Bills 10 6 .625 350 335
(5) Indianapolis Colts 9 7 .563 331 316
(6) Miami Dolphins 9 7 .563 398 332
New England Patriots 6 10 .375 294 377
New York Jets 3 13 .188 233 384
AFC Central
Team W L PCT PF PA
(2) Pittsburgh Steelers 11 5 .688 407 327
Cincinnati Bengals 7 9 .438 349 374
Houston Oilers 7 9 .438 348 324
Cleveland Browns 5 11 .313 289 356
Jacksonville Jaguars 4 12 .250 275 404
AFC West
Team W L PCT PF PA
(1) Kansas City Chiefs 13 3 .813 358 241
(4) San Diego Chargers 9 7 .563 321 323
Seattle Seahawks 8 8 .500 363 366
Denver Broncos 8 8 .500 388 345
Oakland Raiders 8 8 .500 348 332
NFC East
Team W L PCT PF PA
(1) Dallas Cowboys 12 4 .750 435 291
(4) Philadelphia Eagles 10 6 .625 318 338
Washington Redskins 6 10 .375 326 359
New York Giants 5 11 .313 290 340
Arizona Cardinals 4 12 .250 275 422
NFC Central
Team W L PCT PF PA
(3) Green Bay Packers 11 5 .688 404 314
(5) Detroit Lions 10 6 .625 436 336
Chicago Bears 9 7 .563 392 360
Minnesota Vikings 8 8 .500 412 385
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 7 9 .438 238 335
NFC West
Team W L PCT PF PA
(2) San Francisco 49ers 11 5 .688 457 258
(6) Atlanta Falcons 9 7 .563 362 349
St. Louis Rams 7 9 .438 309 418
Carolina Panthers 7 9 .438 289 325
New Orleans Saints 7 9 .438 319 348

Tiebreakers[edit]

  • Indianapolis finished ahead of Miami in the AFC East based on head-to-head sweep (2–0).
  • San Diego was the first AFC Wild Card based on head-to-head victory over Indianapolis (1–0).
  • Cincinnati finished ahead of Houston in the AFC Central based on better division record (4–4 to Oilers' 3–5).
  • Seattle finished ahead of Denver and Oakland in the AFC West based on best head-to-head record (3–1 to Broncos' 2–2 and Raiders' 1–3).
  • Denver finished ahead of Oakland in the AFC West based on head-to-head sweep (2–0).
  • Philadelphia was the first NFC Wild Card ahead of Detroit based on better conference record (9–3 to Lions' 7–5).
  • San Francisco was the second NFC playoff seed ahead of Green Bay based on better conference record (8–4 to Packers' 7–5).
  • Atlanta was the third NFC Wild Card ahead of Chicago based on better record against common opponents (4–2 to Bears' 3–3).
  • St. Louis finished ahead of Carolina and New Orleans in the NFC West based on best head-to-head record (3–1 to Panthers' 1–3 and Saints' 2–2).
  • Carolina finished ahead of New Orleans in the NFC West based on better conference record (4–8 to 3–9).

Playoffs[edit]

                                   
December 31, 1995 - Lambeau Field   January 6, 1996 - 3Com Park at Candlestick Point          
 6  Atlanta  20
 3  Green Bay  27
 3  Green Bay  37     January 14, 1996 - Texas Stadium
 2  San Francisco  17  
NFC
December 30, 1995 - Veterans Stadium  3  Green Bay  27
January 7, 1996 - Texas Stadium
   1  Dallas  38  
 5  Detroit  37 NFC Championship
 4  Philadelphia  11
 4  Philadelphia  58   January 28, 1996 - Sun Devil Stadium
 1  Dallas  30  
Wild Card Playoffs  
Divisional Playoffs
December 30, 1995 - Rich Stadium  N1  Dallas  27
January 6, 1996 - Three Rivers Stadium
   A2  Pittsburgh  17
 6  Miami  22 Super Bowl XXX
 3  Buffalo  21
 3  Buffalo  37     January 14, 1996 - Three Rivers Stadium
 2  Pittsburgh  40  
AFC
December 31, 1995 - Jack Murphy Stadium  5  Indianapolis  16
January 7, 1996 - Arrowhead Stadium
   2  Pittsburgh  20  
 5  Indianapolis  35 AFC Championship
 5  Indianapolis  10
 4  San Diego  20  
 1  Kansas City  7  

Statistical leaders[edit]

Team[edit]

Points scored San Francisco 49ers (457)
Total yards gained Detroit Lions (6,113)
Yards rushing Kansas City Chiefs (2,222)
Yards passing San Francisco 49ers (4,608)
Fewest points allowed Kansas City Chiefs (241)
Fewest total yards allowed San Francisco 49ers (4,398)
Fewest rushing yards allowed San Francisco 49ers (1,061)
Fewest passing yards allowed New York Jets (2,740)

Individual[edit]

Scoring Emmitt Smith, Dallas (150 points)
Touchdowns Emmitt Smith, Dallas (25 TDs)
Most field goals made Norm Johnson, Pittsburgh (34 FGs)
Rushing Emmitt Smith, Dallas (1,773 yards)
Passing Jim Harbaugh, Indianapolis (100.7 rating)
Passing touchdowns Brett Favre, Green Bay (38 TDs)
Pass receiving Herman Moore, Detroit (123 catches)
Pass receiving yards Jerry Rice, San Francisco (1,848)
Punt returns David Palmer, Minnesota (13.2 average yards)
Kickoff returns Ron Carpenter, New York Jets (27.7 average yards)
Interceptions Orlando Thomas, Minnesota (9)
Punting Rick Tuten, Seattle (45.0 average yards)
Sacks Bryce Paup, Buffalo (17.5)

The 1995 season produced four of the top eleven highest single-season totals for receiving yards. The top two receiving yard totals of all time – Jerry Rice's 1,848 & Isaac Bruce's 1,781 – were recorded in 1995. Detroit Lions receiver Herman Moore gained 1,686 yards (6th highest all time) and Dallas Cowboys receiver Michael Irvin gained 1,603 yards (11th most in NFL history).

Milestones[edit]

The following players set all-time records during the season:

Most Touchdowns, season Emmitt Smith, Dallas (25)
Most Passing Attempts, career Dan Marino, Miami (6,531 at the end of the season)
Most Passes Completed, career Dan Marino, Miami (3,913 at the end of the season)
Most Passing Yards, career Dan Marino, Miami (48,841 at the end of the season)
Most Touchdown Passes, career Dan Marino, Miami (352 at the end of the season)
Most Pass Receptions, career Jerry Rice, San Francisco (942 at the end of the season)
Most Pass Receiving Yards Gained, career Jerry Rice, San Francisco (15,123 at the end of the season)

Awards[edit]

Most Valuable Player Brett Favre, Quarterback, Green Bay
Coach of the Year Ray Rhodes, Philadelphia
Offensive Player of the Year Brett Favre, Quarterback, Green Bay
Defensive Player of the Year Bryce Paup, Linebacker, Buffalo
Offensive Rookie of the Year Curtis Martin, Running Back, New England
Defensive Rookie of the Year Hugh Douglas, Defensive End, New York Jets

External links[edit]

References[edit]