He never played a down for the Green Bay Packers, but his Hail Mary throw on the last play of the 2003 season gave Green Bay a division title from 1,820 miles away.
Josh McCown has retired after 17 NFL seasons, playing with the Arizona Cardinals, Detroit Lions, Oakland Raiders, Carolina Panthers, Chicago Bears, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Cleveland Browns and New York Jets.
His stats weren’t spectacular – just a 79.7 passer rating. He never played a postseason game.
But on December 28, 2003, his right arm powered the Packers to a division title while playing for the Arizona Cardinals.
They played the Minnesota Vikings that afternoon in sunny Tempe. Minnesota owned its playoff destiny, needing just a win to clinch the NFC North.
The Packers had to beat Denver and hope for an unlikely Arizona upset of the Vikings.
Green Bay did its part, but that upset in the desert looked highly unlikely when Minnesota owned a 17-6 lead on Arizona, before McCown hit Steve Bush for a two-yard touchdown pass with 1:54 left.
The two-point conversion failed, but the Cardinals got the ball back on an onside kick.
Finally, with no time left on the clock, McCown hit Nate Poole with a 28-yard miracle in the end zone to beat Minnesota 18-17.
Fans inside Lambeau Field’s main bowl didn’t know the result unless they were listening to Wayne Larrivee & Larry McCarren’s call of the touchdown during the Packers’ own two-minute warning.
“HE GOT IT? DID HE GET IT? YES! YES!” exclaimed McCarren at the very moment the Packers took their second straight division title from their rivals to the west.
Word spread from the luxury boxes to the other fans, as a crescendo began to road throughout the stadium bowl.
Then the Packers put the Arizona score up on the scoreboard, and the celebration began.
Green Bay Packers fans will be thanking McCown, probably until he dies.