Danger Of Long FG Attempts

September 15th, 2020

Rethinking long field goals.

Some people, with a tad of success, have tried to go all baseball stat geek on football.

The stat geeks have so fully ruined baseball that for Joe, it is unwatchable and a far cry from the game Joe grew up loving.

But in football, the influx of stats has actually enhanced the game if not changed the way we think. No more punting from midfield on fourth-and-one, for example. And that’s a good thing.

Now after a fresh look at another element of the game, long field goals, are they on the cusp of being phased out? Michael Lombardi believes they should be.

The former coffee fetcher for Bill Walsh, Al Davis and Bill Belicheat (and he has two sons working in the NFL), took to the VSiN airwaves after Sunday’s games and stated that attempting field goals over 50 yards is setting yourself up to lose unless it is the final play of the first half or you are trying to win a game in the final seconds.

With 3:36 left in the first half on Sunday in a loss to the slimy Saints, the Bucs had Ryan Succop attempt a 54-yard field goal, which was blocked.

Lombardi noted in his ViSN appearance that all but two teams on Sunday that attempted a 50+ yard field goal and missed also lost.

Lombardi insisted that a missed field goal beyond 50 yards — not on the last play of the first half or late in the game — is a turnover no matter how you slice it.

“A plus-50 yard field goal that is a miss is a turnover, I don’t care how you do it,” Lombardi said. “When you break it down and you look at it, there were 12 field goals over 50 yards attempted on the day. They only made five of them.”

Lombardi claimed that rather than try a long field goal attempt with poor odds of conversion, if it is fourth-and-short a team’s odds of making a first down are as good if not better than a kick attempt.

And that got Joe thinking: With all the weapons the Bucs have on offense, why even think of kicking a field goal unless you are within the 35-yard line? With the targets park-violating, home-invading, NFLPA-ignoring Bucs quarterback Tom Brady has, going for it on fourth down in enemy territory should be a no-brainer.

22 Responses to “Danger Of Long FG Attempts”

  1. Swampbuc Says:

    Agree. I was yelling at the tv. Did BA forget that Gay was released?

  2. Rod Munch Says:

    Dirk punts from the 37.

  3. Rod Munch Says:

    OK, here’s where I was totally in the wrong. I said the Bucs should have brought in Gostkowski for a workout and see if he’s healthy. I was perfectly fine with Succop, but thought Gostkowski would be the better kicker based on his history. Boy was I wrong. Gostkowski is complete garbage tonight. Looks like Matt Gay will be getting a job in Tennessee.

  4. REDZONE BA Fan Says:

    @swamp – NO to your question. BA’s instinct’s are best for Bucs.

  5. JimmyJack Says:

    This makes sense but fail to see how it applies to our game. Correct me if I’m wrong but I thought I remember us being in 4th and long.

  6. Tampabuscsbro Says:

    Yeah it doesn’t apply to our game.

  7. Rod Munch Says:

    Succop is 20 of 38 from 50+, that’s not bad at all. 54 is his career long, but 20 FGs from over 50 means you have a good leg. Succop was a top kicker in the NFL for a very long time before his injury.

    On the blocked FG, whoever snapped the ball (I didn’t see the number) got ran over. This wasn’t a block because the kicker was going for a low arc to get distance, it was a legit block.

    As for the attempt it was 4th and 19, so really you only have two options. You punt like Dirk would do, or you try the FG. I think Arians did the correct thing considering it’s a dome. The person to blame for the miss was Leftwich for calling such a moronic long developing play on 3rd down.

  8. JimmyJack Says:

    Rod just a correction. The block wasnt on our longsnapper. It was Cappa who was next to. Actually he didnt get run over he just stood there while the guy who blocked ran by him

  9. Rod Munch Says:

    JimmyJack – I only saw it from TV and didn’t rewatch it, but it looked to me like the snapper and the guard next him got clean ran over. I certainly could be wrong considering I only saw it once – but it looked like the OL gave him now chance.

  10. Rod Munch Says:

    Gostkowski wishes he would have stayed retired. What a terrible way to end your career, since there’s no way he isn’t cut, and there’s no way he gets another job.

  11. Rod Munch Says:

    I have a parlay with the under and the Titans -3 1/2.

    No issues with the under so far, and the 3 1/2 would be locked up without Gostkowski being trash.

    But I did take a ‘alt’ line bet on the earlier game between the Steelers and Giants, got a 38 1/2 Over, but only win $42 on a $100 bet. I thought it was a no brainer, easy way to make $42 – and was right, except for the easy part. The stupid Giants kept blowing opportunities at the goal line – but they pulled it out in the end.

  12. Rod Munch Says:

    What a load of garbage, what kind of coach brings out their kicker who has missed 3 FGs and an XP instead of going for a short TD… WOW. This prick cost me $9 I would have won…

  13. Joe Says:

    This makes sense but fail to see how it applies to our game. Correct me if I’m wrong but I thought I remember us being in 4th and long.

    Succup missed a 54-yard field goal. On the ensuing possession, largely thanks to a short field (and a penality), the Saints got a field goal as the first half expired.

    So in this scenario, it would be better to punt.

  14. CalBucsFan Says:

    The defense was Playing exceptionally well, they absolutely should have punted, backed them up and then perhaps get another set of downs starting at midfield.

  15. ClwJB Says:

    Cappa was still in his stance as the NT shot right through his gap

  16. DavidBigBucsFan99 Says:

    Not like all those special weapons were getting open regularly. Brady threw for only 236 yards so punting and pinning them deep would be the better option

  17. stpetebucsfan Says:

    I totally agree with Lombardi…except as has been stated a last chance at the end of the game with the clock running out.

    Not only does it insure great field position for the other team with a miss..a block can really turn things around. The offense all heading one direction the defense the other when the kick gets blocked which leaves a kicker and a holder to stop the defender from a scoop and run for six.

  18. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    There is no way the block was Succop’s fault……you can’t make a kick when you got a guy 7’6″ with his hands up standing in front of you.

    As for trying….I’m good with that…..as for 4th & short, depending on the game situation, go for the 1st down.

  19. Chris l Says:

    Missed fg, blocked punts, and turnover on downs should all be considered turnovers. Bottom line the Bucs lost the turnover battle and lost. The two most important stats anyone should ever care about in football are turnovers and red zone efficiency

  20. HeyItsAdam Says:

    With the pass defense as bad as it is, we shouldn’t be punting at all. Go for it on every fourth down.

  21. Rod Munch Says:

    ClwJB / Jimmyjack – I trust you all saw it, so thanks for correcting me. I just know I didn’t put the block on the kicker since he had guys right on top of him.

  22. unbelievable Says:

    Cappa had a pretty rough day.