After drilling his first attempt from 58 yards out – the second longest field goal in Bucs history – to cut the Texans lead to 7-3 in the second quarter, Kyle Brindza’s success faded quickly on Sunday.
The rookie kicker, who the Bucs traded for after Week 3 of the preseason, missed four kicks in his second NFL outing. After hitting the upright on an extra point in the second quarter, Brindza missed wide right from 41 in the third and again from 33 in the fourth, before capping his performance off with a miss wide left from 57 that kept it a two-score game.
“I just didn’t do my job,” Brindza said after the game, via Buccaneers.com. “I’ve just got to come back and get ready for the next game. I just didn’t follow through all the way [on my kicks]. I’ve just got to push through. It’s tough. It’s one of the toughest jobs in the game, mentally, but I’ve just got to do my job.”
The Bucs have had kicking trouble since the preseason. With Pat Murray struggling in the first two weeks, Tampa Bay re-signed veteran kicker Connor Barth and neither could win the job. Their poor Week 3 outing led the Bucs to look elsewhere and trade tight end Tim Wright to Detroit for Brindza. The former Fighting Irishmen, who finished his senior season 14-24 on field goal attempts, has displayed a strong leg but accuracy is clearly still an issue.
Despite the misses, head coach Lovie Smith gave Brindza a vote of confidence at his post game press conference, essentially calling it a team loss.
“Kyle is our kicker,” Smith said. “He, like a lot of us, had a disappointing day. You’re going to have off-days and this was an off day. When a player has an off-day, we need to rally around him in other ways and that’s what we weren’t able to do today.”
While Smith wasn’t willing to single Brindza out on a day numerous players struggled, he and general manager Jason Licht have shown their impatience with the kicking game in the past. If Brindza doesn’t “push through” and fix the issues next week, one would think Tampa Bay could again be in the market for a kicker.
Zach is entering his 3rd year covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as a writer for PewterReport.com. Since 2014, he's handled a large part of the beat reporting responsibilities at PR, attending all media gatherings and publishing and promoting content daily. Zach is a native of Sarasota, FL, and a graduate of the University of Tampa. He has also covered high school football for the Tampa Tribune and the NFL for Pro Player Insiders.
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I really believe this is another poor choice by Lovie Smith. Conner Barth has a proven track record in the NFL and is very accurate. Brindza has a strong leg but only made 75% of his FG in college. So we shouldn’t be surprised when he misses the way he did against Houston. He might turn out to be a good kicker, but with this Bucs team, points are always needed. So we cant afford to have missed FG.
I’m mot quite ready to say that this is a poor choice by Lovie, but kickers need to maintain confidence and once it starts going it is hard to get back. Saw it a couple of years ago with Blair Walsh at UGA when he started missing everything.
While Barth has a proven track record, not sure he ever fully recovered from torn groin. Brindza has shown the ability to connect on the long ones and can consistently put the ball in the endzone on kickoffs.
If his woes continue this week against Carolina then yes, I believe he will be gone.
wELL bUC fANS REMEMBER BUC FANS ISN’T THE TEXANS STADIUM ON ARTIFICAL TURF! hE IS A ROOKIE AND HE WILL GET BETTER. i CAME TO THE CLEVELAND BROWNS PRE-SEASON GAME. AND i’D REMEMBER THAT GAME. oUR KICKERS WERE BAD THEN. tHERE IS A REASON WE TRADED FOR THIS KICKER FROM COLLEGE. hE WILL TURNED IT AROUND. hE WILL WIN SOME GAMES THIS YEAR AND i SEE THAT THE tEXANS HAD jj watt AND clowneY SO DON’T GET DOWN TOO MUCH DON’T TAMPA COME HOME SUNDAY.GO BUCS
Rough is an understatement. Rough is a night out at the bar and you wake up the next morning feeling hung over. This was a disaster and you could see it happening after the first missed extra point.
His % at ND was around 58% as well so hes always been inaccurate. But damn can he boot it. That 58 yarder would’ve been good from 65. But you have to get it down the middle as another poster said.
Is it just me, or does it feel like we’re the only team in the league without a reliable kicker. We go through kickers like underwear- it changes daily.
After he boinked the extra point off the upright I had a feeling it would get in his head and would struggle. Let’s see if Kyle can get back on track. Must be contagious since the Texans kicker missed two himself. Got a name for it, “Kicker Shock”
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