Longwell Knew Hall's Kick Was Tough

When Minnesota Vikings kicker Ryan Longwell watched his Washington Redskins counterpart, John Hall, line up for a 48-yard field goal try to attempt to tie the game Monday night in the closing seconds, Longwell knew that Hall was facing no easy task. Longwell had drilled a 46-yard field goal at the same end of FedEx Field as time had expired in the first half, and he knew he'd had to deliver the truest of kicks.

"I knew it was a tough kick," Longwell said. "That one I had in the first half at that end was a tough kick. It was kind of into a crosswind. I knew he'd have to hit it perfect."

Hall didn't. He pulled his kick wide left with 12 seconds left and the Vikings escaped with a 19-16 triumph. The winning points came on Longwell's 31-yard field goal at the opposite end of the field with a minute to go.

By Mark Maske |  September 12, 2006; 10:23 AM ET  | Category:  Redskins , Vikings
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when in the world is this team going to get a reliable kicker? although it shouldn't have come down to one kick to tie the game, redskins fans had to know what was about to happen - another miss by john hall. the guy doesn't or can't even kick off anymore. what does gibbs see in him that we don't?

The list of failed kickers is long and frustrating; brett conway, jeff chandler, ola kimrin. the skins should do themselves and their fans a favor and go sign nick novak today. let's not have another david akers get away. enough is enough.

Posted by: tim flynn | September 12, 2006 12:50 PM

We can't blame John Hall for this loss. If it were not for him, we wouldn't have made it to 16 points. The offense and more specifically, Mark Brunell, is to blame. I have never seen a quarterback throw the ball away more than Brunell. Joe Gibbs brought him here because he was a smart quarterback who knew how to take care of the ball, but you don't throw the ball away on 3rd down when there is no one in your face! Scramble some more and make something happen. That's why we paid so much money in the off-season for Lloyd and Randle El. John hall is not to be blamed, I'd like to see you make a 47 yarder with the game on the line!

Posted by: Chris Evans | September 12, 2006 1:08 PM

Tim,
Hall is about as reliable a kicker as you're going to get outside of Viniateri. So no matter who you bring in here, they are going to miss sometimes, that's just the nature of the position. I hope the UM alum dont start calling for Novak.

Posted by: Darrell | September 12, 2006 1:17 PM

Actually given what we've seen from the preseason and the uncertainty of the offense from the beginning, i don't necessary think a lot of the blame can be put on offense. DO i wish he was more aggressive on some of the 3rd down situations, perhaps but first mark burnell isn't exactly as nimble as other quaterbacks plain and simple. If there is no play on the field and you're not exactly a nimble runner it doesn't leave much for him to do. Honestly i thought there was a lot of blown coverage in this game. Minnesota should not have scored 19 points last night on this defense, they are better than that and if it were not for williams dropping two big passes, it would of looked even worst. The d-line also didn't seem like they gave johnson enough pressure, however i was pretty disappointed in the secondaries.

Posted by: Tom | September 12, 2006 1:26 PM

Hall is not consistent. If you look at the way each of his kicks were booted, you'll see that each had a different rotation and height. And he tried to kick the game-tying kick too hard, which caused him to pull it. Much like a golf swing, a kicker needs to maintain a smooth swing and consistent rotation and routine. I just haven't seen that out of him in his tenure with the Redskins. I agree that the game shouldn't have gotten to that point, but he needs to make those. At least come within a few feet of making it. He missed by 10 yards.

Posted by: Tony | September 12, 2006 1:31 PM

I was at the game last night and it seems to me it is the same old stuff. The problem I see on offense is Brunell, it is time to take our lumps with Campbell, atleast we know he can throw the ball more than 20 yards downfield. The defense has nothing to play for, the last two years the members of this defense were playing with chips on their shoulders, this year they seem not to have that anger. It's only the first game but we will lose a lot more if Brunell continues to start.

Posted by: Eric | September 12, 2006 1:53 PM

Anyone who alibis for John Hall needs to get a clue. For someone is among the most highly paid at his position, Hall is a big waste of $$. He didn't just pull it wide left, he pulled a reverse Vanderjagt! (just as wide different direction). Outside of 42 yards Hall is not reliable and he can't even kickoff!!!! It's pretty sad when you are saying to yourself that the Redskins have to get to the 25 to have a better than 50 percent of making a FG. You may not like Novak (his kickoffs need work) but at least he can kickoff and the guy actually made a game-winning FG last year (42 yards and that was right down the middle and would've been good from 50). Hall stinks and he has got to go. Bring back Novak!

Posted by: George Templeton | September 12, 2006 2:03 PM

I do feel bad for Hall, he seems to be a good guy. However, the Redskins can not rely on his health and should go for a more cost efficient solution at kicker. Any salary cap savings would be a plus as well.

Posted by: Bob Ward-Ashburn, VA. | September 12, 2006 2:24 PM

Where have you gone, Chip Lohmiller?

Posted by: Ben | September 12, 2006 2:48 PM

I think the defense really deserves a lashing for this one. For all the long drives they gave up, what right do they have to dance around when they make one good play? And when they don't make good plays, they still dance around. Carlos Rogers got a huge break when Williamson dropped a sure TD -- what the heck was Rogers dancing for afterwards? His great view of the play? Sure Springs was not there, but this defense should be better that it showed. Maybe the reality is that teams have caught on to Greg Williams system. Without any pressure from the front four, this defense is destined for mediocrity. This lack of pressure (without blitzing) has been a longstanding problem for the Skins, and even when they do blitz, it seems that teams have no problems picking it up. Oh and lets not forget the O-line, one of the highest paid groups in the league. Their inability to pass protect or open running lanes in the clutch is inexcusable!

Posted by: Ed | September 12, 2006 2:54 PM

Where have you gone, Chip Lohmiller? Our Redskins Nation turns its lonely eyes to you.

Posted by: Ben | September 12, 2006 2:54 PM

It's been all of one game. Too soon to call for new quarterbacks and kickers ... even though the team had better step it up for the Cowboys

Posted by: Gonzo, MD | September 12, 2006 3:10 PM

The sad thing is that even before John Hall lined up for the attempt, I knew he was going to miss. Hall just isn't reliable enough to hit from 40+.

Posted by: chris-centrevile | September 12, 2006 3:22 PM

I think it is time to get rid of Hall. This is hardly the first time he's been suffering from consistency issues.

He went 0-4 in the preseason. Hopefully with Gibbs no longer calling plays he can give this position the attention that it sorely needs and has needed for several years now. I'm not familiar w/ Nick Novak, and I won't suggest a replacement for Hall, but what is clear is that the Skins can't count on him when the game is on the line.

Posted by: BJS | September 12, 2006 3:32 PM

What happenned to Andre Carter. It was like he was not on the field.

Posted by: Stro | September 12, 2006 3:42 PM

For the last 2 yrs. I've had to watch the Skins from afar. They had a remarkable year last yr going from 5-6 to 10-6 w/a win in the playoffs. I had hoped for more this year - alas, preseason wasn't pretty, and you play how you practice. However, we still have Gibbs - somehow, someway he'll get the team competitive. This next game in Dallas will be REALLY tough. Never give up on Gibbs - he finds a way to win...

Posted by: mark - gainesville, fl | September 12, 2006 3:43 PM

No Chip Lohmiller, please....he was only marginally better than Hall. We need a REAL kicker....bring back Mark Moseley...that man could kick!! Now I agree with the posters who say the defense is really the issue. On the Vikings first TD drive they converted 3rd and 9, 3rd and 7 and 3rd and 4. On their other TD drive, same thing: 3rd and 7, 3rd and 9, 3rd and 5. On both drives, the final 3rd down conversion was also the TD play. That's unacceptable. The defense's JOB is to put the opposing team in 3rd and long....but then you have to stop them!! It was like they would play first and second down and then fall asleep.

Unlike others, I think Brunell did a decent job. No INTs, no fumbles, no sacks. Completed more than half of his passes, and of the 11 that weren't completed, only four were "thrown away". That's called being a smart QB....throw it away, don't force it in somewhere (Brett Favre), don't sit around waiting to get sacked (Aaron Brooks). I will agree that the offensive line needs to step up their run blocking, but their pass blocking was fine.

Last topic: dancing. If Coach Gibbs isn't running the offense or defense, the least he could do is teach this team some bleeping discipline. If I were the head coach, if ANY player danced on the field during a game (except with 10 seconds left up by 42 points) he would be fined, significantly. Carlos Rogers is an idiot, dancing when Williamson dropped that pass...he sure didn't drop it because of anything YOU did, Carlos!! And I saw Joe Salavea'a dancing not once, but twice after plays when he was totally out of the play and someone else made the tackle. What the???? I don't care how happy you are, if you're not winning by an insurmountable margin (see above) you have NO business celebrating anything, even moreso if you're LOSING!!!

Okay, I'm done ranting....until next week, anyway

Posted by: Ron in Reston | September 12, 2006 3:43 PM

I am fed up with Mark
Brunell. Yes he took us to the playoffs last year. it is obvious he needs to hang it up.He could be
an assistant quarterback coach. Put
Jason Campbell in. I am willing to take a couple of losses to see this kid develope.
in!

Posted by: Donald E. Gaskins | September 12, 2006 3:56 PM

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