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Blair Walsh finally gets noticed

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There was skepticism in the NBC viewing room on Sunday as rookie kicker Blair Walsh lined up to try a 55-yard field goal to force overtime.

There was no skepticism after the ball was kicked.

The sixth-round pick from Georgia drilled it, one of four field goals he made in his first NFL game, with no misses.  He added a 38-yard game winner in overtime, making him the first person in NFL history to ever score an overtime point that didn’t end the game.

Adding in a pair of extra points, and Walsh was a perfect six-for-six on the day.  He also put four of his five kickoffs into the end zone.

For his efforts, Walsh has been named the NFC special-teams player of the week.  He’s the first Vikings kicker to win the award since 2008, and the first rookie kicker in team history to accomplish the feat.  With his foot.

For a team with an offense that conjures zero memories of 1998 (although a 38-yard field goal definitely does), having a kicker who can make long field goals and influence field position will have a major impact in close games.

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16 Responses to “Blair Walsh finally gets noticed”
  1. iluvbears says: Sep 12, 2012 11:08 AM

    Walsh was a great pick by the Vikings. He is young and has a huge boot. I am sure he will have his share of miscues as he develops, but he gives the Vikings a kicker who should be dynamic & dependable for years to come.

  2. kleppnasty says: Sep 12, 2012 11:20 AM

    Good for Blair, but I hope Akers at least came in second on the votes after that amazing 63 yard boot.

  3. 97tahoe says: Sep 12, 2012 11:21 AM

    If he can remain accurate at those long distances, he may completely change the way the Vikings approach some games. Which hopefully translates into a couple of more victories this season.

  4. matthewcarlson1 says: Sep 12, 2012 11:32 AM

    Big difference for the defense to start at the 20 this year rather than the 40. Loved Longwell but he couldn’t kick off and that has been harder on the team than people realize.

  5. magnustroi says: Sep 12, 2012 11:40 AM

    Ryan Who ? So ALL the Haters who said Speilman was stupid for wasting a Draft choice on this young kid ,I bet every single one of the had a big dish of Crow for dinner Sunday !!!!

  6. davikes says: Sep 12, 2012 12:00 PM

    You can coach a lot of things but you can’t coach clutch. Hats off to Walsh for being about as clutch as you can get in his first ever regular season game.

    Hats off to Ponder for being clutch enough to get the team into position to kick those field goals.

    I think both have a bright future in the NFL.

  7. purpleguy says: Sep 12, 2012 12:08 PM

    Another reason he deserves the award: he said right before the 55-yarder AP hit him on the helmet pretty hard as he was telling him good luck — almost kocking him as goofy as Kluwe.

  8. thankheavenfornumberseven says: Sep 12, 2012 12:15 PM

    So far it looks like a great draft by Spielman. It took some guts to cut Longwell and give the job to a rookie. You couldn’t ask for a better start to a career for a kicker.

  9. kmossg says: Sep 12, 2012 1:24 PM


    Great point, I was so sick of the vikings taking a lead or scoring then giving up a return to the 40 and setting up the opposition for a short drive

  10. briggy59 says: Sep 12, 2012 1:52 PM

    Nice leg, Walsh! It looks like Minnesota could be headed for a nice season!

  11. Frazier28/7 says: Sep 12, 2012 1:57 PM

    Steal of the draft for the Vikings and my fantasy football league! 15 points from a rookie kicker in week one!

    Skol Blair lets win this game!

  12. davrosmn says: Sep 12, 2012 1:59 PM

    So was the 55 yarder the longest in NFL history for a kicker’s first NFL start?

  13. vikesfansteve says: Sep 12, 2012 2:44 PM

    I hated Longwell almost as much as Gary Anderson. His terrible kickoff in the NFC Championship against the Saints all but handed them the victory. Now let’s hope Spielman does something about Kluwe before he out kicks his coverage again and gives zero effort to tackle in another punt return for a TD or he shanks another 16 yd duck outdoors in Nov and Dec. Oh but the Kluwe lovers say he can get the ball inside the 20. Who cares if the Vikings give up 25 yds on the first play after the punt.
    Love Walsh’s kickoff power.

  14. vikesfansteve says: Sep 12, 2012 2:48 PM

    Every year a team comes out of nowhere to make the playoffs. Here’s hoping that spectacular comeback in 14 seconds sparks this team to a monster season.

  15. joshvanklomp says: Sep 12, 2012 3:00 PM

    How’s Jayme Mitchell working out for the Browns? Blair Walsh was selected with CLE’s 2012 6th rounder, but they traded it to MIN in Oct. 2010 for Jayme Mitchell.

  16. woodsvikes says: Sep 12, 2012 4:37 PM

    @ vikesfansteve

    WT*! You are blaming Kluwe for the Vikes giving up 25 yrds on the 1st play after the punt. How is that HIS fault? At least get it right if your going to talk smack about him. Yes, he out kicks his coverage at times and yes he shanks one now and then. However, he DOES pin teams inside they’re 20 a lot of the time. He does with punts what your praising Walsh for doing on his kickoffs. Oh and BTW most kickers occasionally out kick their coverages and ALL kickers shank 1 or 2 a year as well. Calm down on the kicker. Just because you don’t agree with his views on other issues is NO reason to talk down his play as a punter. Also, I don’t think “Tackling ability” is a part of what teams look at for a punter.

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