Matt Gay has one of the strongest legs of any kicker in the NFL. He made a 58-yarder as a rookie in 2019 and drilled a 55-yarder this season, showing what a powerful leg he has.
That’s exactly why everyone was shocked when Gay appeared to make a 47-yard field goal to put the Rams up 17 points against the Buccaneers, only for that kick to fall woefully short. Nowadays, not even average kickers never 47-yard field goals short, so it was surprising to see Gay’s attempt fail to reach the crossbar.
After the miss, some fans recalled Al Michaels mentioning an apparent injury suffered by Gay during pre-game warmups. Michaels said this just before the opening kickoff was booted in the air: “He had a little bit of an issue about an hour and a half ago when he was warming up out on the field, and since the Rams won the toss and have deferred, we’ll see him right off the bat.”
There was some wind at Raymond James Field, which could’ve factored into Gay’s miss and his four kickoffs that failed to go for touchbacks. But even in the wind, Gay shouldn’t have left that 47-yard attempt short.
If he did get hurt, Sean McVay wasn’t aware of any sort of injury.
“No, I mean there were a few factors depending on which way you were kicking it that made it a little bit more difficult but that’s news to me,” McVay said after the game when asked if an injury affected Gay.
While the miss was disappointing, McVay was thrilled to see Gay come through in the clutch for the Rams once again, beating his former team with a last-second field goal for the second time in two years.
“Pretty awesome, the last two times he’s been back here, he ends up hitting game winners and we end up winning by three,” McVay said. “He’s been great, he’s been clutch, I’m so glad for him that he got the opportunity to come back from an uncharacteristic miss. Those are things that inevitably occur. How do we respond? He did a great job in addition to the other 10 guys around him so I’m…