Robbie Gould has been a sensational kicker for a very long time. He’s a free agent the Vikings ought to severely contemplate including.
Throughout his postseason profession, he hasn’t missed a kick, a exceptional feat after we do not forget that he’s been part of 16 playoff video games, the equal of a full season (till lately). He is an ideal 29/29 on area objectives and 39/39 additional factors.
What wouldn’t it take to purchase that form of consistency? The Vikings might quickly discover out.
Certainly one of Minnesota’s inside free brokers is Greg Joseph. After a promising 2021, the South African kicker struggled together with his encore. He was 26/33 (78.8%) on his area objectives and 40/46 (87.0%) on his additional factors. In the meantime, SF’s veteran kicker went 27/32 (84.4%) on his area objectives and 50/51 (98.0%) on his additional factors.
Gould probably presents extra consistency within the upcoming season. If Minnesota will get to the playoffs, Gould presents the close to certainty that he’ll drill his kicks.
Upon first look, the foremost concern is twofold: a scarcity of vary and the value. In 2022, Gould solely hit 2 area objectives from 50+; he solely had the two makes an attempt. He went 7/11 on kicks between 40-49 yards. So, he wasn’t leaned on to kick from deep fairly often and the moderately lengthy kicks – within the 40s – weren’t notably correct.
Joseph discovered himself on the other finish of issues. He received 10 makes an attempt from 50+ however solely hit 4 of them. In equity, one in every of them was the truly sensational kick from 61 yards to seal the deal against the New York Giants:
Now, having the ability to hit from distance is a fascinating trait in a kicker, but it surely’s not the be-all, end-all. Vikings followers far and large would probably welcome boring consistency over booming unreliability. If the Vikings discovered themselves on the perimeter of the veteran kicker’s vary, Kevin O’Connell may have to easily go for it on 4th down or enable Ryan Wright – a.k.a The Stallion – to drop the ball contained in the 20.
The opposite concern is cash, or lack thereof. Final season, Robbie Gould carried a $5,509,313 cap hit. Joseph, in distinction, solely had a $2,433,000 hit, so the kicker finances would greater than double if Gould had an an identical cap hit in 2023 (which is not any positive factor). Minnesota might must lean into void years to make a possible Gould deal work.
One other complicating issue is the franchise tag. Would SF use the tag on their veteran kicker to keep away from dropping him? One has to imagine they’d like his clutch kicking for an additional playoff run in 2023. The kicker franchise tag quantity is a reasonably manageable $5,393,000.
Anybody who has adopted Minnesota is aware of that kicking heartbreak has a starring position within the drama that’s Vikings historical past. With the ability to rectify that concern has been a stubbornly troublesome concern. The crew will likely be seeking to, on the very least, present competitors for Joseph (if they bring about him again). Even higher, although, could also be a deal for somebody who has been lights out for a very long time.
Robbie Gould is somebody to maintain at the back of your thoughts as free company will get nearer.
Editor’s Be aware: Info from Pro Football Reference and Over the Cap helped with this piece.