Bironas kicking in November 2008
|Date of birth: January 29, 1978, in Louisville, Kentucky|
|Date of death: September 20, 2014 (age 36), in Nashville, Tennessee|
|High school: Louisville (KY) Trinity|
|College: Georgia Southern|
|Undrafted in 2001|
|Debuted in 2003 for the Charleston Swamp Foxes|
|Last played in 2013 for the Tennessee Titans|
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
James Robert Douglas "Rob" Bironas (January 29, 1978 – September 20, 2014) was an American football placekicker. He was signed by the Green Bay Packers as an undrafted free agent in 2002. He played college football for Auburn University and Georgia Southern University. Bironas was an All-Pro and Pro Bowl selection in 2007. He was a member of the Charleston Swamp Foxes, Carolina Cobras, New York Dragons and most recently the Tennessee Titans. Bironas was killed in a car accident in 2014.
Bironas attended Trinity High School in Louisville, Kentucky, and was a four-year varsity letterman in soccer, a two-year varsity letterman in football and swimming, and added a one-year letterman in track and field. He graduated in 1996.
Bironas attended Auburn University, where he played for the Auburn Tigers football team from 1997 to 1999. He was a semi-finalist for the Lou Groza Award in 1998 after making 12 of 16 field goal attempts (including two successful 49-yard (45 m) tries with the four misses from 40+) and making all 18 PATs for a team-high 54 points. The following season, new head coach Tommy Tuberville replaced Bironas, the preseason All-SEC kicker of the football team, with the punter, Damon Duval. Bironas later transferred to Georgia Southern University, where his brother was on the soccer team, for his final year of collegiate eligibility, and played for the Georgia Southern Eagles football team. Bironas won the 2000 NCAA Division I-AA National Championship while playing with the Eagles, before returning to graduate from Auburn with a bachelor's degree in marketing.
Bironas spent the 2003 season with the Charleston Swamp Foxes of the Arena Football League's minor league system (af2). He made 12 of 27 field goal attempts that season for the Swamp Foxes. He moved up to the Arena Football League in 2004 with the Carolina Cobras converting 17 of 40 field goal attempts and 70 of 89 extra point tries. He spent the 2005 season with the New York Dragons before signing with the Titans connecting on 7 of 16 field goal attempts and 99 of 117 extra point attempts for the AFL's New York Dragons.
National Football League
In 2005, Bironas signed as an unrestricted free agent with the Tennessee Titans, where he finished his first season with the Titans converting 23 of 29 field goals attempts (79.3%) and 30 of 32 extra points attempts (93.8%). Bironas finished the season with 11 touchbacks, which tied him for fourth in the AFC and seventh in the NFL.
In 2006, Bironas built on his previous success and kicked 4 game winning field goals, including one of 60 yards against the Indianapolis Colts, which tied as the eighth longest in NFL history.
He was named the AFC Player of the Month for the month of October (2007). He made 13 of 14 field goals (92.9 percent) and all six PATs as he helped the Titans earn a 3-1 (.750) record for the month. He accounted for 45 of the team's 81 points in October. In the Titans' three wins in October, Bironas connected on 12 of 13 field goals, including an NFL-record eight field goals in one game (52, 25, 21, 30, 28, 43, 29 and 29 yards). This records effort also included the game-winning kick against the Houston Texans at Reliant Stadium on October 21. In the same game, he tied the existing record of five field goals made in a single half. Bironas was selected to the NFL's All-Pro Team and the Pro Bowl.
On February 28, 2008 the Titans tendered Bironas to a one-year, $1.417 million contract as a restricted free agent. He signed his tender on May 9, 2008.
On February 18, 2009, the Titans re-signed Bironas to a four-year contract.
The Titans and Bironas agreed to a two-year contract extension on March 8, 2013 worth $6.7 million.
The Titans released Bironas on March 19, 2014.
Records and honors
- AFC Special Teams Player of the Week - 2006 Season - Week 13
- AFC Special Teams Player of the Week - 2007 Season - Week 7
- AFC Special Teams Player of the Month - 2007 Season - October
- Most NFL game winning field goals in a season (4 in 2005 - Tied, most recently, Josh Brown)
- Most field goals in a game (8) - October 21, 2007 at Houston Texans
- Most points by a kicker in a game (26) - October 21, 2007 at Houston Texans
- 2nd most points scored in a game in franchise history (26) - October 21, 2007 at Houston Texans (1st place: Billy Cannon (30), December 10, 1961; Houston Oilers at New York Titans)
- Most points scored by any player in a game played in Texas (Houston, Dallas, San Antonio) (26)
- Most field goals in a half (5 - Tied with Morten Andersen, Chris Boniol, Mike Nugent) - October 21, 2007 at Houston Texans
- 2008 Pro Bowl selection
- Led Tennessee Titans in scoring in both 2005 and 2006
- 2nd place on franchise's all-time scoring list
- Second place on franchise's all-time field goal list
- Selected to All-Pro Team in 2007 and 2008
- Most consecutive games with a 40+ yard field goal in NFL history (10).
|Season||PAT||PAT Pct.||20-29||30-39||40-49||50+||FG-FGA||FG Pct.||Long||Points|
Bironas founded The Rob Bironas Fund in 2008. The Nashville-based nonprofit is part of the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee, and works to give Nashville youth ways to engage with and be educated by area musicians. The fund finances tools, education and leadership to help Nashville youth achieve scholastic excellence through music education. The fund has partnered with both the Nashville Symphony and Country Music Hall of Fame.
Bironas was a board member of the Nashville Symphony, and worked to provide help to needy children through the Kicks for Kids program.
Bironas was also a member of Phi Kappa Tau Fraternity, where he contributed to charity and philanthropy.
On September 20, 2014, Bironas was killed in a car crash at approximately 11 p.m. He lost control of the SUV that he was driving and swerved off the road, flipped several times, hit several trees, and finally landed upside down in a drainage ditch. He was transported to Vanderbilt University Medical Center but was pronounced dead on arrival. Witness testimony at the time of the accident indicated that Bironas had been driving aggressively in the moments prior to his fatal crash.
Despite initial media reports indicating no signs drugs or alcohol were involved in Bironas' fatal crash, the official toxicology report released 11 days after the crash revealed that Bironas' blood alcohol level had been 0.218 percent BAC, almost 3 times the legal limit of 0.08 in the state of Tennessee.
Bironas was 36 years old at the time of his death.
- February 11, 2009, 10:04 PM (2009-02-11). "Auburn Suspends Two Players". CBS News. Retrieved 2012-10-07.
- "Former NFL kicker Rob Bironas killed in car crash in Tennessee," Chicago Tribune, September 21, 2014
- Jim Wyatt, "Rob Bironas, Former Titans Kicker, Killed in Car Crash," The Tennessean, Sept. 21, 2014.
- Jim Wyatt, "Woman: Rob Bironas Tried to Run Me Off the Road," The Tennesseean, Sept. 23, 2014.
- Jim Wyatt, "Toxicology Report: Rob Bironas Had 0.218 Blood Alcohol," USA Today, Oct. 4, 2014.