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Phil Dawson to retire as a Cleveland Brown

Longtime placekicker and fan favorite will sign one-day contract to retire with his original team.

Phil Dawson #4...

Phil Dawson, who kicked for the Cleveland Browns from 1999 through 2012, will sign a one-day contract so that he can retire as a member of the Browns.

Dawson issued a statement via

“To have the opportunity to come back home and retire with the organization and the city that I love is incredibly meaningful to me. It only seems right to have the opportunity to do this with the fans that have been so good to me and my family.”

The Browns signed Dawson as a free agent when the team returned to the NFL in 1999. He became a fan favorite over the years as he was often the lone bright spot during numerous disappointing seasons.

According to the team’s website, Dawson is second on the franchise list with 1,271 points, and third in games played with 215. He holds franchise records for:

  • most career field goals (305)
  • highest career field goal percentage (84.0)
  • most field goals in a season (30 in 2008)
  • highest field goal percentage in a season (93.5 in 2012)
  • field goals in a game (six on Nov. 5, 2006)
  • most consecutive field goals made (29)
  • most consecutive games with a field goal (23)

Dawson is also the only placekicker in franchise history to be selected to the Pro Bowl. (Hall of Famer Lou Groza made the Pro Bowl nine times, but as a tackle, not a placekicker.)

A free agent after the 2012 season, Dawson signed with the San Francisco 49ers, where he played until 2016, and then spent the past two seasons with the Arizona Cardinals.

All told, Dawson played in 305 career regular-season games, and finishes his career ranked seventh in games played, eighth in field goals made (441), 11th in points scored (1,847) and 16th in field goal percentage (83.8).