Greg Zuerlein has been a reliable kicker for the majority of his NFL career. On Thursday night, however, he was a liability for the Dallas Cowboys.
During the season opener, Zuerlein missed a 31-yard field goal and extra point attempt. Those misses from Zuerlein proved to be costly, as the Cowboys lost by just two points to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
When speaking to the media during his postgame press conference, Zuerlein took accountability for the Cowboys’ loss and apologized to his teammates for not holding up his end of the deal.
“If I do my job, we win that game,” Zuerlein said, via the Cowboys’ official website. “So I feel bad for the guys in there that played their ass off and I didn’t hold up my end of the deal.
“With a team that’s that good, returning every player from a Super Bowl victory, we’re right there. We’re right there. And I just have to do my job.”
Cowboys K Greg Zuerlein: "If I did my job, we win that game. I feel bad for the guys in there that played their ass off, and I didn’t hold up my end of the deal. …We’re right there (as a team). I just have to do my job."
— Michael Gehlken (@GehlkenNFL) September 10, 2021
Despite his kicker’s struggles on Thursday night, Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy isn’t ready to give up on Zuerlein.
“I have great faith and confidence in him, and we need him,” McCarthy said. “He made the clutch, clutch kick there at the end to give us the lead before the two-minute drive by Tampa.”
Zuerlein did make a clutch 48-yard field goal to give the Cowboys the lead over the Buccaneers with a little over a minute remaining. Perhaps that momentum will carry over to next weekend’s game against the Los Angeles Chargers.