Last week wasn’t a great week for NFL kickers, especially as the Arizona Cardinals and Seattle Seahawks stumbled their way to a tie on Sunday Night Football thanks, in part, to missed kicks in overtime. Week 8 didn’t go much better, with missed kicks and PATs changing the course of games around the league.
As Washington and the Cincinnati Bengals faced off in London, missed kicks from both teams were the main reason this one ended in a tie.
Washington’s kicker, Dustin Hopkins, hit a field goal late in the fourth quarter to tie the game up and give the team a shot to win in overtime. When he got the opportunity to give Washington an advantage in overtime with a field goal, though, his 34-yard attempt sailed wide left.
The overtime attempt was Hopkins’ second miss of the game after a 55-yard attempt just before the half was short of the uprights.
If it weren’t for a miss from kicker Mike Nugent, the Bengals could have won in regulation. Nugent’s 51-yard attempt went wide left in the second quarter, and an extra point attempt in the third quarter went wide left, too.
The Oakland Raiders found themselves in overtime with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, in part because of some uncharacteristic misses from kicker Sebastian Janikowski and a missed PAT from Bucs kicker Roberto Aguayo.
Aguayo, a rookie and a second-round draft pick, has struggled with missed field goals this season, converting just six of 11 attempts prior to this game. On Sunday, his one field goal attempt against the Raiders was good from 41 yards out, but he got his eighth missed kick of the season with his second missed PAT of the year. The Bucs made it up on the very next score with a two-point conversion.
Janikowski has converted 80.2 percent of his field goal attempts over the past 17 seasons, but he was nowhere near that mark on Sunday. He missed two of his three field goal attempts against the Bucs, including one that would have won the game in regulation for Oakland.
That miss, at the end of the fourth quarter, was from 50 yards out and was left of the uprights. Janikowski got a shot to redeem himself and establish a three-point lead over the Bucs in overtime, but that 52-yard attempt went wide as well. Luckily for Janikowski, Derek Carr was able to connect with Seth Roberts for a 41-yard touchdown late in overtime, saving us all from yet another tie.
Kicking woes didn’t end there, however. In one of the late-afternoon games, Chargers kicker Josh Lambo had his extra point attempt blocked after a jaw-dropping Travis Benjamin touchdown catch. The Chargers could have closed the deficit to three points, but the miss meant the Broncos held a 17-13 lead.