The Ravens’ newly-appointed rookie kicker was perfect in the preseason and nearly just as flawless in training camp practices.
He experienced his first miss Thursday night in St. Louis, his first game with the full-time job. But perhaps more importantly, Tucker rebounded to avoid an 0-2 start as the uncontested kicker.
“I’ve always said the hardest one to make is the one after a miss,” Tucker said. “I’m glad I just went out there and knocked it down.”
Tucker trotted out for a highly difficult 57-yard attempt at the end of the first half. His kick was plenty long enough, but just wide left.
Tucker jogged to the bench and got a pat on the back and smile from Kicking Consultant Randy Brown. The scowl on Tucker’s face showed he wasn’t happy, however.
“I crushed it, felt really good coming off the foot,” Tucker said. “It just didn’t really stay on the line I set out. It happens sometimes. You’ve got to just forget about it and have a real short memory.”
Tucker came back out in the third quarter for a 49-yard attempt. It was a telling moment to see if he could mentally rebound from a miss.
He nailed it, dead center with room to spare.
Tucker said he entered the game with the same mentality that he did in the previous three, when he went 5-for-5 with successful kicks from 50 and 53 yards. He said he’s been preparing to be the starter the whole time.“I didn’t think anything of it,” Tucker said of his rebound kick. “It’s just one of those things where you’ve got to get over the hump.”