After his impressive performance in Week 5 against the New York Giants, Minnesota Vikings kicker Dan Bailey has been named the NFC Special Teams Player of the Week.
If one were to ask Mike Zimmer what has been one of the least enjoyable parts of his tenure as the head coach of the Minnesota Vikings, dealing with kickers is likely something that would be near the top of his list.
Ever since Blair Walsh missed a 27-yard chip shot to cost the Vikings a first-round playoff win over the Seattle Seahawks in 2015, Zimmer’s patience with kickers has been almost non-existent.
This season, however, things might actually be heading in the right direction for Minnesota’s kicking game.
During the team’s win over the New York Giants in Week 5, Vikings kicker Dan Bailey connected on all four of his field goal attempts and both of his extra point tries. It was the first time a Minnesota kicker converted at least four field goals in a game since Kai Forbath did it in Week 8 of the 2017 season.
This is the fourth time Bailey has been named the NFC Special Teams Player of the Week in his NFL career. The last time he won the award was way back in 2015 when he was a member of the Dallas Cowboys.
Bailey’s honor would seem to be a good sign for Minnesota’s current kicking situation. There were a number of questions surrounding the Vikings kicker heading into the season and so far, he’s exceeded the expectations that most probably had set for him.
In Minnesota’s five games this year, Bailey has made 7-of-8 field goal attempts and 11-of-12 extra point tries.
For a guy who almost wasn’t even a part of the team’s 2019 roster, the veteran kicker has been a pleasant surprise for the Vikings this season and hopefully, he can continue to perform well during the team’s remaining games.