‘Low as it will get’

  • Scott M. Johnson / Herald Writer
  • Monday, October 29, 2001 9:00pm
  • Sports

By Scott M. Johnson

Herald Writer

KIRKLAND – At 6-foot-3 and 226 pounds, Rian Lindell is not built like your average NFL kicker.

But even his frame isn’t large enough to shoulder the burden he has this week.

The Seattle Seahawks kicker, who missed just two of 17 field-goal attempts as a rookie last year, missed twice in Sunday’s 24-20 loss to Miami.

“This is probably as low as it will get,” Lindell said Monday. “I can’t imagine it getting worse, considering the circumstances. That would have been a really nice win for us.”

Coach Mike Holmgren hasn’t threatened Lindell’s job security yet, but it is apparent that another day like Sunday could cost the 24-year-old Washington State University product his career in Seattle.

“It’s something that every kicker goes through,” special teams coach Pete Rodriguez said. “The good ones work their way through it. The ones that don’t work their way through it find another vocation.”

Lindell missed a 35-yarder on Seattle’s first drive Sunday, then missed a key 28-yard field goal late in the game that would have brought the Seahawks within one point of the Dolphins.

Lindell walked off the Husky Stadium field hitting himself in the head while muttering, “Just chip it through.”

“It was embarrassing,” Lindell said one day later. “My mom and step-dad were there, and then having to see my wife afterward like, ‘I shouldn’t have done that.’”

Lindell was one of the Seahawks’ few constants during the otherwise dismal 2000 season. He was signed to a contract in Week 5, and promptly hit 15 of 17 field goal attempts – including all three kicks from 50 yards or longer.

This year, Lindell has struggled. He’s 9-for-15 and has missed two of three beyond 50 yards. Lindell’s 60 percent conversion rate ranks 13th in the AFC, better than only Cincinnati’s Neil Rackers (7-for-14).

“Even in practice and everything, I’ve been trying to get into a rhythm,” Lindell said. “It’s day by day. It’s not that I’ve been horrible, but it’s always a work in progress. If I play for 10 years, I’m still going to be trying to hit a more perfect ball.”

Lindell’s kicks on Sunday were far from perfect. The first miss sailed wide left, but not by much, while the second one wasn’t even close. Lindell said his point of impact on both kicks was too high on the ball.

Of course, part of his recent struggles is also mental. That’s what makes the wait so difficult.

“The only real true test is the game,” Rodriguez said. “Practice is great, and you try to simulate the game situation, but it’s not the same.”

Lindell vowed to be better in this weekend’s road game against the Washington Redskins. And by all accounts, he’d better be.

“The thing that has made Rian is his clutch field-goal kicking and his consistency,” Rodriguez said. “That’s what separated him. He’s got to have that to be here.”

Talk to us

More in Sports

Marysville Pilchuck girls wrestler Alivia White, who his committed to wrestle at the University of Iowa next year. Iowa is set to become the first NCAA D-I school at the Power Five level to offer a varsity women’s wrestling team allowing White a unique opportunity of being a part of a historic moment for the sport. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
MP star Alivia White helps blaze trail in women’s wrestling

The 2-time state champ signed with Iowa, which is set to roll out the first varsity women’s wrestling team at a Power 5 school.

Lake Stevens’ Koen Mattern and Glacier Peak’s Dane Chapman wrestle during the 220 pound weight class match at Lake Stevens High School on Thursday Jan. 26, 2023. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Lake Stevens tops GP, claims another Wesco 4A wrestling title

The Vikings found success all evening, racing to a 60-19 win over the Grizzlies in the de facto league-title dual.

X
Prep roundup for Saturday, Jan. 28

Prep roundup for Saturday, Jan. 28: (Note for coaches/scorekeepers: To report results… Continue reading

X
Prep roundup for Friday, Jan. 27

Prep roundup for Friday, Jan. 27: (Note for coaches/scorekeepers: To report results… Continue reading

Silvertips gamers with no art.
Silvertips fall on road to Americans

Tyler Palmer makes 37 saves, but Everett loses 2-1 to Tri-City.

EC’s Damajio Merritt (20) fights for the ball during a men’s game between the Everett Community College Trojans and Edmonds College Tritons at Seaview Gymnasium at Edmonds College in Lynnwood, Washington on Wednesday Jan. 25, 2023. The Tritons won, 91-84. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Tritons top Trojans in heavyweight NWAC hoops battle

Edmonds uses a 14-0 run to start the second half to take control of a game between top men’s teams.

Arlington’s Samara Morrow looks to cut to the basket against Stanwood on Wednesday, Jan. 25, 2023, at Arlington High School in Arlington, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Arlington girls rally past rival Stanwood in key league showdown

Standout senior Jenna Villa pours in 29 points and the Eagles ride a third-quarter surge to victory.

People gather in front of the Snohomish County Sports Hall of Fame display case during the 2022 Hall of Fame banquet Wednesday, Sep. 28, 2022, at the Edward D. Hansen Conference Center in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Community roundup: Nominations open for county Hall of Fame

Plus, Jacob Eason signs a futures deal with Carolina, UW’s Sami Reynolds gets a preseason honor and more.

X
Prep roundup for Thursday, Jan. 26

Prep roundup for Thursday, Jan. 26: (Note for coaches/scorekeepers: To report results… Continue reading

Most Read