Aussie helps NFL side to first-up win

Denver Broncos defensive tackle Adam Gotsis, of Australia.
Denver Broncos defensive tackle Adam Gotsis, of Australia. David Zalubowski

AMERICAN FOOTBALL: Aussie defensive tackle Adam Gotsis has played his part as reigning Super Bowl champions the Denver Broncos sneaked past the Carolina Panthers in a repeat of last season's finale.

The Broncos won the game 21-20 after Panthers kicker Graham Gano missed a 50-yard field goal with nine seconds left that would have won the game.

Melbourne-born Gotsis, 23, a defensive tackle, first saw action in the second quarter but was on the field for only a short time.

He was more used as the game went on, as Denver's highly rated defence shut down Panthers quarterback Cam Newton.

Newton did his best to reverse the result of last year's decider, setting up the field goal attempt in the closing seconds, but Gano's kick went wide left.

Gotsis, 23, was taken with pick No.63 in the second round of the draft by Denver. He is Australia's highest ever draft pick and just the 12th Aussie to play in the NFL.

Topics:  denver broncos nfl