Today marked the 11th Sunday of the 2016 NFL season. 11 games have been finished so far. 11 PATs were missed.
In 2014, 99.3% of point after attempts were made, with kickers missing only 7 throughout the entire season. The following season, the snaps for extra points was moved from the 2-yard line to the 15-yard line, making PATs a 33-yard attempt. With the move back, extra point percentage dropped to 94.2%, the first time it has been under 97% since 1989, and under 95% since 1979. And then today happened.
11 PATs were missed through the first 11 games, with two kickers, Robbie Gould of the Giants and Mike Nugent of the Bengals, missing two each. Other kickers to miss PATs included Matt Prater, Kai Forbath, Connor Barth, Jason Myers, Cody Parkey, Stephen Gostkowski, and Steven Hauschka. The previous record for misses in a single week was 10, during week 2 of the 1985 season.
The league’s intention last summer was to make the PAT less automatic and, hopefully, to bring more 2-point conversion attempts into play. But after a year and a half of the new rule, 2-point conversions are still a rarity in the NFL. I’m sure more tweaks to the rules may be made over the next few years, as kickers continue to struggle with the 33-yard attempt and coaches continue to be stubborn about going for two from 2-yards out.
A notable miss today game from Kai Forbath, who had an attempt blocked today in his debut for the Vikings. Forbath was signed last Wednesday, after former Pro Bowl kicker Blair Walsh saw his extra point percentage drop under 80% (15-19) on the season.
The new rule has obviously made the PAT attempts involve more strategy and thinking on the part of coaching staffs around the league as they are no longer an automatic point. But 11 misses in one day is really something to scratch your head at. It’s definitely not a good day to be a kicker in the NFL.
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