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Kicking Competition Still in Full Swing

In three preseason games, the Washington Redskins attempted three field goals. Two were made from within 30 yards; the other was missed from 52 yards.

The lack of game opportunities has made it difficult for the coaching staff to reach a conclusion on the kicking competition between incumbent Shaun Suisham and challenger Dave Rayner, who has played on five teams in four seasons.

"You'd almost like to stage some of those things, which isn't really good for your football team," special teams coordinator Danny Smith said.

When Coach Jim Zorn listed the key position battles entering the preseason finale on Thursday against the Jacksonville Jaguars, the kickers were the first that came to his mind.

Suisham made a 20-yarder against the Pittsburgh Steelers, but missed the 52-yarder against the New England Patriots.

"It obviously could have helped him if he made that kick," Smith said, "but I don't believe it kills you on one kick, either."

Rayner connected on a 25-yarder against the Patriots and hit all four of his PATs during the preseason.

Suisham was 26 for 36 last season with a long of 50 yards. His career long is 52 yards. Rayner's career long is 54 yards, which came in 2006 with the Green Bay Packers.

Smith said he will meet with Zorn this week to discuss how to use the kickers in Thursday's game. Because of the limited opportunities in games, much of the evaluation must come from practice.

"The pressure's on. When you're in a competition, it doesn't matter," Zorn said. "To us, it matters that you're on the field kicking. But you got to be out here [at practice] making field goals as well. Because we're not afforded the situations when they come, we have to use our practice time and create a competitive situation as well - and an evaluating situation as well."

The kickers competed in a kick-off last week. Both made all six attempts, which prevented any clarity. Another kick-off will take place on Monday or Tuesday.

"Can you imagine if these kicks were for your job in practice?" Zorn said. "It's very competitive, and there is high stakes."

By Zach Berman  |  August 30, 2009; 5:00 PM ET
 
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Comments

TDs are nice, but I remember the opening day game in '05 when the Redskins beat the Bears 9-7. That win was just as enjoyable as the 35-7 win over Dalls later that same season.

Viewers who demand a lot of scoring should watch the CFL.

Posted by: MrRedskin21 | August 30, 2009 4:52 PM |

You're on crack, watching the Skins beat the Bears is NEVER as enjoyable as watching the Skins spank the Girls.

Posted by: scampbell1975 | August 30, 2009 5:07 PM | Report abuse

Viewers who demand a lot of scoring should watch the CFL.

Posted by: MrRedskin21 | August 30, 2009 4:52 PM |

And if you don't want to see scoring, stick with soccer.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 30, 2009 5:17 PM | Report abuse

You're on crack, watching the Skins beat the Bears is NEVER as enjoyable as watching the Skins spank the Girls.

I second that, anytime we beat dallas is worth it all week long, the 9-7 win was one of the most painful victories I have watched in years, almost as tough as last year's 2nd philly win towards the end of the year.

Posted by: stivic | August 30, 2009 5:41 PM | Report abuse

t_e, the excitement of soccer comes from the points that AREN'T scored.

Or so I'm told.

Posted by: freakzilla | August 30, 2009 5:42 PM | Report abuse

Viewers who demand a lot of scoring should watch the CFL.

Posted by: MrRedskin21 | August 30, 2009 4:52 PM |

Viewers who demand a lot of scoring should watch Travis Henry.

Posted by: SonofNero | August 30, 2009 5:42 PM | Report abuse

t_e, the excitement of soccer comes from the points that AREN'T scored.

Or so I'm told.

Posted by: freakzilla | August 30, 2009 5:42 PM

Well, soccer fans would have loved last year's Redskins offense. Hoping they go back to soccer this year.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 30, 2009 5:45 PM | Report abuse

mrredskin21

"Viewers who demand a lot of scoring should watch the CFL."


I feel you, bro'.

But the league's competition committee has decided to protect one position more than others: the quarterback.

Why?: money and scoring.

I'm not saying I think that's what football is.

I'm just saying that is what Roger Goodell and the owners want it to be.

And that rather than hating on that, Mr. Zorn and others would do well to draw up plays where guys are getting lose and catching the ball.

The days of depending on the dominant running back carrying the rock are winding down.

Hear that CP?

People who think quartberbacks will fail forget that Big Ben has been sacked the most and he has two rings.

Posted by: MistaMoe | August 30, 2009 5:45 PM | Report abuse

I kinda liked that 2nd Philly win.

Especially the whinging from McNabb afterwards.
~

Posted by: ifthethunderdontgetya | August 30, 2009 5:47 PM | Report abuse

I'd like to challenge the argument about the Skins not doing well on early round picks. Here's why:

We had 4 years of Joe Gibbs who with all his positive attributes was loyal to veterans to a fault. We traded picks away for FA's and past-their-prime players. With the exception of the Fantasy Football year, the Skins worst personnel acquisitions were under Gibbs, particularly free agents...yes we got Cooley and Taylor, but we also got Lloyd, Archuleta, and Duckett.

I think the jury is still out on Cerrato, but with some of the young talent we have on this team, it looks like we're turning a corner.

We'll see...

Posted by: rickyroge | August 30, 2009 5:49 PM | Report abuse

I watched most of Seattle/Kansas City last night, and the Seattle Kickers (Olindo Mare, Brandon Coutu) were locked in a battle of who wants it less.

They went a combined 0-3 last night (Mare missed two), after going a combined 3-3 in the first two games. So we're not the only team where the kickers aren't doing much to differentiate themselves.

Posted by: freakzilla | August 30, 2009 5:50 PM | Report abuse

Is Rayner the same chap who used to be a Green Lantern? Quite an imagination on that kid.

Posted by: PDiddy | August 30, 2009 5:51 PM | Report abuse

The Pats just dumped the QB who threw two interceptions against us in the second half, Kevin O'Connell. By that measure, good bye Colt.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 30, 2009 6:00 PM | Report abuse

If it comes down to "they're both bad at field goals, so how do we decide?"

How about picking the guy who makes better kickoffs? That would be Rayner, so far.
~

Posted by: ifthethunderdontgetya | August 30, 2009 6:01 PM | Report abuse

Some miss the point; it was about scoring - or at times lack thereof - not which team the Redskins beat.

If it makes them feel better though, I'll phrase it this way:

When the Redskins beat Dallas 9-5 on MNF in 1978, it was just as enjoyable as when they beat them 35-7 in '05.

Posted by: MrRedskin21 | August 30, 2009 6:04 PM | Report abuse

beepalicious

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 30, 2009 6:04 PM | Report abuse

On our kicking competition, I like frak's take:

We should keep Suisham, b/c I remember us cutting David Akers too early and he turned out to be great for the iggles.

Posted by: Vicc | August 30, 2009 6:06 PM | Report abuse

TDs are nice, but I remember the opening day game in '05 when the Redskins beat the Bears 9-7. That win was just as enjoyable as the 35-7 win over Dalls later that same season.

Viewers who demand a lot of scoring should watch the CFL.

Posted by: MrRedskin21 | August 30, 2009 4:52 PM |
Um...Beating the Pokies is better than beating anyone damn it, and I mean anyone.evem better than beating up a school bully

Posted by: ocskins | August 30, 2009 6:14 PM | Report abuse

Vince Young is the backup QB for the Titans. That makes Patrick Ramsey #3, assuming they don't cut him.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 30, 2009 7:35 PM | Report abuse

Hopefully, Rayner kicks a couple of 40+ FG's and wins the roster spot. If accuracy is about the same go with the guy with the bigger leg on kickoffs.

Posted by: coparker5 | August 30, 2009 7:56 PM | Report abuse

The only real way to determine the winner is to have them try a total of 100 fg's and take the winner from that. That would be a lot more statistically valid than say 6 fg tries lol. Ideally to get a good feel for who is the best, they'd need to kick about 1000 fg's.

Posted by: Thundershock | August 31, 2009 1:11 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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