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Multiple Extra Points Missed as Kickers Struggle with Rule Change in Preseason

SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 11:  Kicker Shayne Graham #3 of the New Orleans Saints reacts after missing a 45-yard field goal in the first half against the Seattle Seahawks during the NFC Divisional Playoff Game at CenturyLink Field on January 11, 2014 in Seattle, Washington.  (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images
Rob GoldbergFeatured ColumnistAugust 8, 2014

Updates from Saturday, Aug. 9

The trend of kickers missing the longer extra point continued on Saturday as Tennessee Titans kicker Maikon Bonani failed to convert against Green Bay (via Jim Wyatt of The Tennessean):

Original Text

The NFL is using the first few weeks of the preseason to experiment with a new extra point and it is already affecting some kickers.

In an effort to make things more interesting after touchdowns, the ball is being placed at the 15-yard line to make the point-after attempt equivalent to a 33-yard field goal. This is only an experimental rule for the first two weeks of the preseason before going back to the two-yard line.

While the kickers had fared well during the first few games, they struggled early in Friday's contest, as noted by ESPN:

Carolina Panthers kicker Jordan Gay looked bad on his first attempt:

Meanwhile, veteran Shayne Graham of the New Orleans Saints also struggled with his first try:

Graham only had seven extra-point attempts last season and converted all of them. Over his 13-year career, he has made 375 of 380 extra points.

Will Gellman of Rant Sports provided his opinion on the rule change:

This goes against what Gregg Rosenthal of NFL.com was hoping to see in the preseason:

On the other hand, former player Charlie Batch believes this should remain throughout the regular season:

Kickers rarely struggle with the normal extra point, with only five kickers missing attempts during the entire 2013 season. No kicker missed more than one.

If the league is hoping to keep things exciting on a play that has become automatic, it seems to have accomplished the goal.

 

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