the study of the kicking components within sports

Monday, November 28, 2011

NFL Week 12: Bengals 23-20 Over Browns, Nugent Hits Winner

Mike Nugent
Whether it would have made a difference is purely speculation. 
A 55 yarder is no certainty and there was almost two minutes still remaining. Regardless, Cleveland's potential game winning field goal was thwarted by a low snap and the attempt came up short. Long snapper Ryan Pontbriand, who also had a costly mis-snap two weeks earlier, commented after the game:
"It was a bad snap ... really bad. It was a very bad snap.... I’m in a pretty tough slump right now. I’m trying to work as hard as I can to get out of it."
Despite the conditions, kicker Phil Dawson felt the kick could have been make-able:
"There were a few gusts as the rain bands came in, but we had it pegged. The operation was not what it needed to be to make that kick."
Punter and holder Brad Maynard had a lot going through his mind during and after the play:
He demonstrated how he tried to handle a snap that came in low and on a short hop: Palms raised, and then immediately smothering the ball; then, pick it up and spot it for Dawson in whatever split seconds were available. Dawson got the kick off, but it didn’t come close. Maynard second-guessed himself. “I thought about getting up and rolling out,” he said. He recalled doing that in 1998, when he was with the Giants, in a game against Tampa Bay. “I did the Garo Yepremian,” he said, meaning he threw a ruptured-duck pass. He tried it again in 2005 when he was with the Bears, on a windy day in San Francisco. His pass went kaput.
“I’m not sure rolling out would have done anything for us,” he said.
With the miss, the score remained tied. With 1:55 remaining, Cincinnati's offense had time for a few short runs and one big pass - putting the ball in position for Mike Nugent to attempt a 26 yarder with 41 seconds remaining. The kick was good. Afterward he briefly discussed the final drive, but was more interested in talking kickoffs:
“The fact that the offense moved the ball down the field like they did was the real game-winner....
Josh Cribbs is a guy you really have to prepare for; the coaches did a great job getting us ready for him. I’m a little disappointed that I gave him the opportunities to return the ball, but the team did a good job stopping him.”

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