Utah Kicker Matt Gay earned the Lou Gorza award in 2017 as the top placekicker in the country. The Chicago Bears should be looking for a kicker in the 2019 NFL Draft, so they should be very interested in Gay, who would be a great addition to the team.
His 2017 stats included a perfect mark on extra points, making all 40 that he attempted. Gay also went 30-34 on field goals, missing only one that was less than 40 yards. In 2018, Gay’s accuracy dipped a small amount. He was still perfect on extra points, but he dropped to 26-31 on field goals.
Oh he's GOOD good. 👀@Utah_Football's Matt Gay broke the school record for most consecutive field goals (21) and is second nationally in field goals made per game (2.09).
— Pac-12 Network (@Pac12Network) November 19, 2018
Can kick in different types of weather. As you can see in the video above, Gay has no trouble nailing the field goal despite the snow on the ground and the temperature. Chicago has unpredictable and inclement weather for a majority of the season and pretty all of the post season, so it does make sense to have a kicker that can kick in any condition, or in “Bear Weather,” if you will.
Matt Gay putting the team on his leg with a 53-yard FG. pic.twitter.com/gaAIFAsC10
— FOX College Football (@CFBONFOX) December 1, 2018
He has great leg strength. Gay has proven his ability to kick the deep ball on multiple occasions. In the clip above, he makes a 53-yard field goal to tie the game at three. According to ESPN.com, Gay’s long is 55-yards, but personally, I think they skimped him a few yards.
71 percent of Gay’s kickoffs were touchbacks. Kickoffs for the Bears haven’t been terrible nor have they been great in recent memory. If Gay could keep his percentage in the 70+ percent range while in the NFL, it would be huge for his draft stock.
Kicking experts believe his three-step approach is too slow. A slow approach is not a good thing. It gives the field goal block unit time to breach the protection, allowing for blocked kicks. Another concern i have with a slow approach is that it gives the wind time to change speed, and for those of us who live in Chicago, we know just how fast it can happen.
Even if the Bears don’t decide to take Gay, he will be a great piece for another franchise to have. He is a reliable option that is great at field goals and kickoffs. Many people think that using a pick on a kicker is wasting a pick, but my response would be that the Bears were a kicker away from making the divisional round of the 2018-19 playoffs.
Follow Alex (@Aburdelik) on Twitter for more Bears opinion and news.