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This Birthday in Buffalo Sports History: Doug Flutie

(Born October 23, 1962) -- Doug Flutie had one of the most interesting careers in recent pro football history, and some of its most interesting moments came here.

He first became known as a quarterback for Boston College. He’ll always be remembered for his “Hail Mary” pass that beat Miami in 1984 and wrapped up the Heisman Trophy in the process.

Flutie was considered a little small to be a pro quarterback at 5-foot-9. After starting in the United States Football League, he spent four years of backup duty in the National Football League. Flutie jumped to the Canadian Football League in 1990, and was one of the CFL’s all-time greats.

Flutie still wanted to prove he could play in the NFL, so he came to Buffalo in 1998. He was a Pro Bowler that year and helped the Bills reach the playoffs. Considering the Bills' lease was up for renewal, Flutie also generated new enthusiasm for the team, so he might have helped save the franchise for the area. Flutie was good in 1999 too, but lost his starting job at the end of the season to Rob Johnson in a move that still causes arguments.

Flutie moved on to San Diego in 2001, and finished his career with New England. The popular quarterback still does some television work.

--- Budd Bailey

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