the study of the kicking components within sports

Monday, November 12, 2012

NFL Week Ten: Tied - David Akers & Greg Zuerlein

St. Louis took the early lead, which they held until midway through the fourth quarter when a touchdown gave San Francisco a four-point lead. Several minutes later, after failing to convert on 3rd-and-8, the Rams opted to have punter Johnny Hekker throw on a fake punt for the second time in the game. For the second time it worked, this time going for 19 yards and a first down.
"We've been practicing that one for a while. It was genius brainchild of Coach [Jeff] Fisher and [special teams coach] John Fassel. It worked just as we drew it up in practice." 
San Francisco head coach Jim Harbaugh commented on the pair of fakes:
"The first one, we were trying to block the punt before the half. We sent our corner. They can throw a pass when they see that, and that takes a lot of gumption to do it, and they did it. The second one, again, was well-executed on their part. Tough break for us to get that done on us, but tip your hat to them."
The Rams went on to score a touchdown and take a three-point lead with 1:09 remaining. 49ers kicker David Akers subsequently tied the game with a 33 yard field goal with three seconds left in regulation.

In overtime, both teams and both kickers had an opportunity for the win. Half way through the extra period David Akers was wide left on a 41 yard field goal attempt. 
"I just tried to smooth the kick, not over-kick it and just kind of fell off the ball. When I do that, that’s why it kind of went left.... I had one that tied the game, stopped us from losing. And then the other aspect, when I had the opportunity to win the game, I didn’t come through. I want to win and I want people to feel good that I’m part of the team. I hope to get back on the horse and do a good job for the 49ers and the fans and my team."

On the next possession, Rams kicker Greg Zuerlein hit an apparent 53 yard game winner, but a delay-of-game penalty negated the kick.
"I didn't realize it. I just kicked it like I thought that was going to be the game."
Johnny Hekker, who serves as holder in addition to punting, took the blame for the penalty:
"I let the delay happen. Greg said he gave me the hand sign with 4 seconds [on the play clock]. We’ve never had a snap, a nod to ‘hand flash,’ take more than 4 seconds. I’m still kind of puzzled as to how that happened."
Greg Zuerlein was wide right on the re-kick from 58 yards:
"I just didn't hit it that well."
Final score: 24-24, for the first tie in the NFL in four years.

No comments:

Post a Comment