The kicker position is a tricky one in the NFL. They usually have just three or four opportunities to make a real impact in any given game, and their performance on those plays can often swing the outcome of an entire game. That makes it crucial for kickers to play consistently at a high level.
A few kickers failed to do that in Week 1 of the 2020 NFL season, though, and teams should be looking to replace these three kickers immediately.
1. Stephen Gostkowski, Tennessee Titans
It's all well and good that Stephen Gostkowski hit the game-winning field goal for the Tennessee Titans on Monday, but his terrible play was the only reason they needed him to do that anyway. Gostkowski finished the night 1-of-2 on extra points and an egregious 1-of-4 on field goals. Considering his 2019 season was cut short by a hip injury that required surgery, he may simply never return to the Pro Bowl level he played at for years with the New England Patriots. A 1-of-4 performance is just unacceptable, and the Titans need to part ways with the 36-year-old as soon as possible.
2. Tyler Bass, Buffalo Bills
It may be harsh to cut a rookie after just one game, but the Buffalo Bills are hoping to contend for the Super Bowl this season and don't have time to let 23-year-old Tyler Bass develop. The sixth-round pick wasn't asked to kick a single field goal of more than 38 yards, but he only managed to go 2-of-4 in Week 1. Just about any kicker in the NFL can hit a 19 and a 22-yarder like Bass did, and missing twice from less than 40 yards is rough. Not every matchup will be as much of a gimme as the New York Jets, and the Bills can't afford to be leaving points on the board if they hope to contend in the AFC.
3. Zane Gonzalez, Arizona Cardinals
Zane Gonzalez had a breakout season for the Arizona Cardinals in 2019, hitting 31 of 35 field-goal attempts. That really came out of nowhere, considering he had made just 24 of 34 (70.6 percent) through his first two NFL seasons. He seemed to take a step back in Week 1, going just 1-of-3 in a win over the San Francisco 49ers. His misses weren't easy kicks (49 and 52 yards), but considering his track record prior to 2019, he shouldn't have an especially long leash this year.