Odds Favor Stephen Gostkowski Missing a Field Goal in Week 2 – Is There Value?
- Tennessee Titans kicker Stephen Gostkowski is favored to miss at least one field in this week’s game against the Jacksonville Jaguars
- Gostkowski kicked the game-winning field goal in Week 1 against the Denver Broncos after missing three FG tries and an extra point
- Gostkowski converted 87.4 percent of his field goal attempts during 14 seasons with the New England Patriots
Ultimately, Stephen Gostkowski was a hero in his Tennessee Titans’ debut.
The veteran kicker’s 25-yard field goal with 17 seconds left lifted the Titans to a 16-14 road victory over the Denver Broncos in their opener Monday night.
However, Gostkowski had a nightmarish game until that point. He missed three other field goal attempts as well as an extra point try.
That has left the oddsmakers having a lack of faith in Gostkowski going into the Titans’ Week 2 matchup with the visiting Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday.
Stephen Gostkowski Total Missed FGs in Week 2 Odds
|Over 0.5 missed field goal||-175|
|Under 0.5 missed field goal||+135|
Odds taken Sept. 16
A Rough Start in Titans Blue
The Titans signed Gostkowski as a free agent Sept. 3rd, with the hopes he could end their kicking carousel.
Last season, Tennessee cycled through four kickers on their way to a berth in the AFC Championship Game.
That quartet made just eight of 18 field goal attempts – a 44% rate.
In the last four years, Justin Tucker has made 144 field goals and missed nine.
In 2019, the Tennessee Titans made eight field goals and missed 10.
— Vincent Verhei (@FO_VVerhei) January 3, 2020
To put that ineptitude into context, NFL kickers converted 81.6% of their field goal attempts in 2019.
However, Gostkowski provided more questions than answers in Week 1, missing a kick in each quarter.
He pushed a 47-yard field goal attempt wide right in the first quarter and had a 44-yarder blocked by Shelby Harris in the second. Gostkowski was then wide left on both a 42-yard try in the third and a PAT in the fourth quarter.
Titans kicker Stephen Gostkowski is 0 for 3 on field goals midway though the 3rd quarter:
47-yd FG: 75.8% (Make Probability)
44-yd FG: 78.3%
42-yd FG: 81.8%
The chances of Gostkowski missed all three field goals according to our FG Probability model? 1 in 105 (~1%).#TENvsDEN
— Next Gen Stats (@NextGenStats) September 15, 2020
As can be seen above, none of those attempts were overly difficult by NFL standards. The success rate was 71.3 percent last season on field goals from 40-49 and kickers converted 93.9 percent on their extra points.
Great Track Record
Gostkowski established himself as one of the most reliable kickers in league history during the first 14 seasons of his career with the New England Patriots from 2006-19.
His 87.4% accuracy rate on field goals was the fifth-highest by an NFL kicker entering this season.
Gostkowski also converted 98.3 percent of his extra points while earning four Pro Bowl selections and winning four Super Bowl rings.
— OwnersBox (@OwnersBox) September 15, 2020
Furthermore, Gostkowski never missed more than two field goal tries during his 204 games with the Patriots.
However, Gostkowski started to show signs of slippage last season when he was limited to four games because of a hip injury. He made seven of eight field goals, but was just 11 of 15 on extra points.
Vrabel Has Faith in the Veteran
Titans coach Mike Vrabel knows Gostkowski well from their days together in New England. The two were teammates for three seasons from 2006-08 before Vrabel moved on to the Kansas City Chiefs, and then started his coaching career with the Patriots.
Vrabel said during his Tuesday news conference that he has faith in Gostkowski and the team is not contemplating a kicking change. It also helps Gostkowski’s cause that COVID-19 testing protocols make quick roster changes more difficult this season.
Vrabel also pointed out that Gostkowski came through when it counted most.
Redemption for Stephen Gostkowski.
The Titans kicker missed three field goals and an extra point before securing the game-winning FG.pic.twitter.com/eEQzXOPYYy
— The Athletic NFL (@TheAthleticNFL) September 15, 2020
Gostkowski believes a wardrobe change could spark a turnaround. He removed his right sock after missing the extra point Monday night then came through with the game-winning field goal.
While that might sound silly, there is a large mental aspect to kicking. So, if he feels comfortable, it can’t hurt.
The Titans are nine-point favorites this week. Going against a rebuilding team, Tennessee’s scoring drives are more likely to end in touchdowns than field goals.
Yet Gostkowski will likely try at least one FG and recent history suggests he will miss at least once. So, there isn’t much value in betting on him having a perfect day.
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