Tale of two kickers
Rick Stroud, Tampa Bay Times, published 15 October 2018

Anytime the difference in the game is a field goal, you have to figure the kicking game played a big role. It did Sunday, as Bucs placekicker Chandler Catanzaro played buzzkill by missing the PAT after his team drove 75 yards with the opening kickoff for a touchdown. Of course, the Bucs wound up chasing that point all afternoon.

With 11:34 remaining in the game, Chris Godwin caught a 9-yard TD pass from Jameis Winston to cut the Falcons lead to 24-22. The Bucs decided to go for the two-point conversion to tie the game. But Winston was pressured and his pass to RB Ronald Jones fell incomplete.

"It hurts to miss an extra point right off the bat,'' Koetter said. "You get off to a fast start, and it's a little bit deflating to miss an extra point. But Chandler feels worse than anybody else. It's not like no one is fired up about it. We've got guys making mistakes and different guys making different mistakes on different plays, and that was his. So, you're chasing points the rest of the game. But would it have mattered at the end? That's hard to say.''

Of course, the Falcons have reliable 43-year-old kicker Matt Bryant, who was as perfect as a kicker can be Sunday. In fact, the confidence the Falcons showed in him was risky. With the Bucs needing only a field goal to win, and having stopped the Falcons near midfield with no timeouts and 1:10 to play, coach Dan Quinn took the chance of having Bryant attempt a 57-yard field goal.

Had Bryant missed, the Bucs would've take over at their own 46-yard line. But if you know anything about Bryant, he haunts his former Tampa Bay team. Naturally, he made the 57-yard field goal and forced the Bucs to need a touchdown to win.

"You know, when you've got a kicker that you trust, you can do that,'' Jameis Winston said. "I think we would do the same thing with (Catanzaro) the way he has been kicking. (Bryant) has been in the game a long time. I mean, you think about Graham Gano, the Panthers lined up from 63 yards, and he could've made it from 70. That guy, he's a good kicker, and that's why special teams is a big part of this game as well.''