After Daniel Carlson had a terrible afternoon in Week 2 last season, former Minnesota Vikings kicker Ryan Longwell offered to try and help the rookie get back on track.
Life as a kicker for the Minnesota Vikings during the last few seasons is certainly not something that has been filled with very little pressure and stress.
Not only have they had to deal with the constant reminders of those who failed before them (Gary Anderson, Blair Walsh), but they also have to try and do their job with an impatient Mike Zimmer acting like a missed extra point is just as worse as a pick-six.
Last year, Minnesota began the season with rookie Daniel Carlson as their kicker. Despite Kai Forbath hitting 84.2 percent of this field goal attempts in 2017, including a 53-yarder late in the Vikings’ playoff matchup against the New Orleans Saints, Minnesota decided to go with the rookie as their kicker in 2018 instead.
During the Vikings’ Week 2 game against the Green Bay Packers last season, Carlson missed all three of his field goal attempts. It was heartbreaking to watch, especially after his final miss when time expired in overtime which ultimately resulted in a tie between Minnesota and Green Bay.
Someone who happened to be watching Carlson’s forgetful Week 2 performance against the Packers was former Vikings kicker Ryan Longwell. Feeling like he could potentially lend his old team a hand, Longwell tried to offer Minnesota help with fixing some of Carlson’s kicking problems.
"“I texted a few people in the front office and said, ‘This is entirely fixable. I’m more than willing to help. We can do it all under the radar.’ That obviously went nowhere.”"
The Vikings obviously had no interest in trying to provide help for Carlson as the rookie kicker was cut by the team shortly after their Week 2 tie in Green Bay.
No longer with Minnesota, Carlson was picked up by the Oakland Raiders midway through the 2018 season and he’s remained with the silver and black ever since. Not only has he stayed with the Raiders, but he also hasn’t missed a field goal attempt or an extra point try in his last nine regular season games with the team.
Clearly, it didn’t take long for Oakland to figure out what was causing Carlson to miss his kicks. The solution could have been something similar to the advice that Longwell might have given him if the Vikings actually wanted to help the young kicker out last year.
But that is a scenario that will forever remain unknown as Minnesota was more interested in a quick fix than something that could have potentially developed into a long-term solution.