the study of the kicking components within sports

Monday, November 18, 2013

NFL Week Eleven: Robbie Gould & Garrett Hartley Kick Winners

After Mother Nature was done delaying the Baltimore-Chicago game, the players still had to contend with the remnants. That included kicker Robbie Gould, whose 38 yard field goal in overtime gave the Bears a 23-20 win.
"The conditions were definitely tough. When you get that amount of rain on the field, it's going to tear it up a lot. It was pretty soft. But everyone did a great job as a team handling it from offense and defense, and we definitely did a great job on the field goal unit blocking.... 

I put it on the right upright, but for some reason the wind didn't want to bring it back as much and it barely snuck in. But they give you the whole upright for a reason."
Gould adjusted accordingly to the conditions.
"It's definitely tough. You have to manage it. You shorten your steps. Make sure you play it where you're supposed to play it. I tried to play off the right upright. The ball was probably moving about a half (of) a goal post. That one, I think, moved 2 inches."
Last Tuesday, New Orleans worked out five kickers after starter Garret Hartley had struggled so far this season. They did not sign anyone. 
“I am my own biggest critic. On the way to the stadium today, I called John Carney and I was picking his brain a little bit. He told me the same thing he did in the NFC Championship game. When it comes down to the wire, just take yourself out of it. You can’t control anything else other than getting the opportunity.”
Yesterday, Hartley responded by going 3 of 3 on field goals, including a 31 yard game winner on the final play as the Saints won 23-20 over the 49ers.
"I would definitely say it (last week) tested (me) ... mentally. And it was time to show everyone, I guess how thick my skin is. This one is definitely a little bit sweeter than most....
I had a couple unfortunate breaks, but I came through today when the game is on the line. Those same people who show their disapproval will cheer you when you make the kick. I have been sticking the ball real well. I never lost confidence in myself. Things just fell this way."

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