Not much usually comes from preseason football. For the most part, the preseason is decent for evaluating backups and that’s about it. Not so for Seattle Seahawks kicker Blair Walsh. In their second preseason game, the Seahawks took on Walsh’s former team, the Minnesota Vikings.
Walsh was cut by the Vikings after nine games last year, making 75% of his field goal attempts and just 78.9% on extra point attempts. In the 2015-2016 playoffs, Walsh missed what would have been the game winning field goal against the Seahawks from 27 yards. He started his career with the Vikings strong, making 92% of his field goal attempts his rookie year. Unfortunately, it was all down hill for Walsh after that.
Walsh’s preseason game against his former team wasn’t made out to be a big deal. Why should it have been? It’s a kicker playing his former team in a preseason game. But Walsh had other ideas. After making a 52 yard field goal in the third quarter, Walsh stared down and pointed at the Vikings sidelines, taunting them. After the game, Walsh said he taunted because he himself was taunted by his ex-teammates, but there is no video evidence of any of these taunts.
Really? A kicker making a field goal in a preseason game against his former team warrants a taunt? Blair Walsh was given every chance to succeed with the Vikings, but his performance on the field just wasn’t good enough. Even if Walsh was getting taunted (again, no video evidence shows this), you would have thought he would be a little bit more humble after his struggles the past couple seasons.
So, a meaningless second preseason game wasn’t so meaningless after all. At least not for Blair Walsh.