A week after expressing hope that beleaguered kicker Blair Walsh would rebound the way Packers kicker Mason Crosby has, Vikings coach Mike Zimmer was explaining why he decided to release Walsh on Tuesday.
“It was just something we felt like we needed to do,” Zimmer said during his Wednesday press conference. “Kind of move forward. We’re all accountable for the things we have to get done. I think we gave him a lot of opportunities. Although Blair is a great kid, and it’s hard to do, it’s just part of the business.”
Walsh had missed eight kicks in nine games, including a league-high four PATs, the last one being his final kick as a Viking in Sunday’s 26-20 loss at Washington. Zimmer was asked if Walsh’s struggles had affect the team’s overall confidence level.
“I can’t really speak for the teammates’ confidence,” Zimmer said. “It just comes down to doing your job.”
The Vikings signed Kai Forbath to replace Walsh. Forbath won the six-kicker tryout the team hosted last week before giving Walsh what turned out to be his final shot to right the ship that began sinking when his missed the 27-yarder in the closing seconds of the 10-9 playoff loss to Seattle.
“[Forbath] has been accurate,” Zimmer said. “He’s kicked before. And he had a UCLA connection with the snapper [Kevin McDermott] and the holder [Jeff Locke].”