Rams News: Sean McVay Not Concerned By Recent Misses From Matt Gay
Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Rams kicker Matt Gay has provided some much-needed stability on special teams to start the 2021 NFL season.

Gay went 6-for-6 on field-goal attempts while hitting all 11 of his PATs through the first three games. However, the past two weeks have been marred by a couple of botched kicks.

Gay missed a crucial 46-yard field goal in the fourth quarter during the loss against the Arizona Cardinals in Week 4. His woes continued in Week 5 versus the Seattle Seahawks when he missed an extra point attempt off the upright and had two kickoffs go out of bounds.

Despite his recent miscues, head coach Sean McVay said on the “Coach McVay Show” that he is still confident in Gay’s abilities, via Cameron DaSilva of USA Today:

“I think one of the things that can’t be minimized, that wind was a real factor, especially when we were going left to right on a couple of those where the kicks went out of bounds,” McVay said on the “Coach McVay Show.” “Matt’s never going to make any excuses. We expect him to perform at a high level, but what I told him that I think says as much about him as anything is, All right, hey, it didn’t go well. But how do you have the ability to just take a deep breath, take a step away, be totally still, be totally present. And then in the moment where you’ve got a chance to really ice the game and put it out of reach and put us up nine, when you’re kicking a field goal there, that to me says a lot about the confidence that we had in him to send him out there in that situation. He delivered in a big way. I think that’s a good thing that he can build on. We don’t want to have those types of things occur, whether it’s missing the extra point or putting a couple of those kickoffs out bounds, but we know that’s not reflective of who he is. If anything, this past weekend gives you a reminder of how difficult the kicking position is and you feel fortunate that we’ve got a good one who we know will be able to learn from some things that didn’t go well. But at the end of the day, what he did do was come through in the clutch for us and that’s not lost on me by any stretch.”

In hindsight, the missed field goal versus Arizona would not have made much of a difference and the Rams were able to overcome Gay’s mistakes versus the Seahawks. If there is any silver lining, it is that they are getting the little mistakes out of the way now while it is still early in the year.

Gay’s performance in the coming weeks will be a major indicator of how well he is able to adjust and bounce back. After all, the Rams made concerted efforts to shore up any notable weaknesses on the roster this offseason and cannot afford to be held back by inconsistencies at the kicker position.

McVay’s offense is finely tuned to put points on the board whether they reach the end zone or not. The onus will also fall on Gay to ensure that he puts the defense in a favorable position as well.