Shooting the Bull: Kubiak and the Texans
The Texans lost by three points to the Colts last Sunday. Randy Bullock missed three field goals, including one to tie the game with seconds left.
That kind of failure can weigh on a kicker, especially one in his first real NFL season. But Bullock, 23, is staying confident.
“I have confidence in myself,” said Bullock, who was a fifth-round pick out of Texas A&M in 2012. “I know I can rebound this week. I’m looking forward to getting out there and proving myself to everybody.”
Bullock went 1-for-4 on Sunday night and is the first player in the NFL since 1985 to have a field goal percentage under 62 percent with at least 20 attempts through eight games.
The Texans reportedly brought in three kickers to work out this week but didn’t sign any. They’ve decided to stick with Bullock and it might have something to do with the way he’s performed at practice.
“The honest thing about it was, he’s been kicking well,” special teams coach Joe Marciano said. “He’s been kicking well in practice. We chart every kick he makes. We’ve got (someone) that follows him around, he charts every practice kick. He’s over 80 percent. His practice tape is good, his practice is good, the drill work is good, so it’s kind of befuddling to me. It would be different if it was that way in practice but it hasn’t been that way in practice.”
Marciano said last week, on Thursday, the day the Texans were forced to practice inside the bubble because or rain, Bullock made a 59-yarder. “How do ya figure?” Marciano said.
This Tuesday, Bullock brought in his longtime kicking coach, Rocky Willingham, to work with him. The two have been working together since Bullock was in high school. Bullock said Willingham was happy to see that Bullock’s mental state was fine.
One technical thing Bullock has been trying to work on is moving faster to the ball as he kicks. Marciano said that was an issue in the second game of the season against Tennessee but the team thought it was fixed.
Bullock said this has been the hardest week of his football career but hasn’t spent any time worrying about fans who have been calling for his job. He said it’s important he doesn’t think too much during games and just focuses on what he needs to do.
“All I can do is worry about each kick, take it day-by-day like I’ve done this week,” he said. “That’s when you really screw up, when you start thinking about other stuff. All I’m gonna do is relax and do my job that I’m completely capable of fulfilling and I think it’ll be a good weekend.”