Patriots’ Desperate Kicker Search Sent Bill Belichick on a YouTube Binge

Journalist:
Travis Pulver @FatManWriting
October 3, 2019

Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots are in unfamiliar territory this week. It’s not the opponent. They don’t play the Washington Redskins often, but they’ve won the last three meetings, most recently in 2015. For the first time since the 2010 season, someone other than Stephen Gostkowski will be kicking for the Patriots.

Patriots Audition YouTube Star to Replace Injured Kicker

Right now, the plan is for Mike Nugent to take over for Gostowski. But the team is not done auditioning kickers.

One of the two they are bringing in on Thursday is known for his kicking, but not because he made a bunch of clutch field goals in college or at his last NFL stop.

His name is Josh Gable, and he has a sensational trick shot video on YouTube.

IR for Patriots Kicker Stephen Gostkowski

Non-Patriots fans may be wondering what happened to the second kicker the Patriots have had in the last 24 years (they’ve had three if you count Shayne Graham; he stepped in for Gostowski in 2010). The 14-year veteran is headed to the season-ending IR due to a hamstring injury.

According to reports, Gostowski has been trying to manage the pain from the injury, so it is nothing new resulting from any particular play.

While he was off to a good start kicking field goals this season (7-of-8 with a long of 41 yards), he had missed four extra points. He only missed one last season and two the year before. Since the extra point was moved back to the 15-yard line in 2015, he had missed just six of 198 attempts (prior to this season).

Who’s Next?

His injury means some other lucky kicker will have an incredible opportunity for the remainder of the season. The Bill Belichick-led team brought in a handful of kickers Wednesday, including Kai Forbath, Elliott Fry, Blair Walsh, Matthew Wright, and Mike Nugent.

They ended up going with Nugent, a 37-year old veteran who has been out of the league since the Oakland Raiders put him on the IR three weeks into the 2018 season. His injury, coincidentally, was the same as Gostowski’s.

So, due to his age and injury history or maybe because he had the worst extra point percentage in the league from 2016-18 (82.4 percent), the Patriots brought in two more guys on Thursday—former Chargers kicker Younghoe Koo and Josh Gable, the former indoor kicker and YouTube phenom (who the team had worked out a couple of years ago) .

Why Go With YouTube Sensation Josh Gable?

Why not?

With Nugent, the team has just another kicker, but in Gable, they have a story. People will talk about the YouTube kicker that got his shot at the big time for years to come. Who doesn’t like to cheer for an underdog like that? Besides, from his videos, it is clear that he is insanely accurate.

Isn’t that the kind of kicker every NFL team wants?

This article was edited by Josiah Wilmoth.

Travis Pulver @FatManWriting

Travis graduated from Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana with a masters in Political Science. Prior to that, he attended IU Purdue in Indianapolis, Indiana where he earned his Bachelors degree in Political Science and earned his first degree at Texas A & M in Galveston, TX, a BS in Maritime Administration. Over the last few years, Travis has worked for several news-oriented sites that focused on sports, especially football, baseball, basketball, and to a lesser extent boxing and MMA. Having grown up in the football-crazed state of Texas football is his first love. According to his mother, he was more excited to watch NFL and college games as a baby than Sesame Street or Mickey Mouse. His passion for sports quickly spread to baseball (favorite team is the Houston Astros), basketball, and track and field as a kid. It wasn’t until his college years that he discovered the tremendous game of rugby. He currently lives in the United States in Indiana, (is a basketball fan but hates going to the Indy 500) with his wife and two adorable kids.