INDIANAPOLIS —The discussions have been had, and the decision has been made: the Indianapolis Colts are moving forward with Adam Vinatieri as their kicker.
“As far as Adam is concerned, Adam is our kicker,” Colts head coach Frank Reich told reporters on Wednesday. “He’s not just our kicker, he’s a leader on our team, he’s a captain, his presence is important. We feel we need him going forward, and have the utmost confidence in him.”
Vinatieri has converted 14-of-19 field goal attempts (73.7 percent) and 14-of-20 extra-point tries (70 percent) this season; he hit both field goal tries last Sunday against the Miami Dolphins, but missed his only extra-point attempt in the Colts’ 16-12 loss.
After starting the season converting just 1-of-3 field goals and 2-of-5 extra points in the first two weeks, Vinatieri settled down over the next five games, hitting 10-of-12 (83.3 percent) of his field goals and 11-of-12 (91.7 percent) of his extra points during that span. That included his Week 8 performance against the Denver Broncos, when he was named AFC Special Teams Player of the Week after hitting two 50-plus-yard field goals, including the game winner from 51 yards out, in the Colts’ 15-13 victory at Lucas Oil Stadium.
Since that game, Vinatieri has converted 3-of-4 field goals (the one miss was blocked) and 1-of-3 extra-point attempts in narrow losses to the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Dolphins.
Reich confirmed Wednesday the team did bring in kickers for workouts this week, but after meeting with general manager Chris Ballard, the team decided to move forward with Vinatieri at the position for a number of reasons.
“Sure you take a look, but when you take a look you see what we’ve got is (that) we believe Adam is the answer,” Reich said. “So that’s how we move forward, so I feel good about that. Obviously we’re all working to get better — every one of us, including Adam and everybody else. So we’ll just keep pressing forward.”