The Rams suffered a huge loss on Wednesday when kicker Greg Zuerlein, the NFL’s scoring leader, was placed on injured reserve because of a back issue.
Zuerlein, or “Legatron” as he is called, made 38 of 40 field-goal attempts this season, and scored 158 points for his team. He was voted into the Pro Bowl, and understandably so.
The Rams will certainly miss his presence on the field, especially given his replacement’s lack of experience. The team signed Sam Ficken earlier in the week, and took a gamble in doing so. Ficken, a former Penn State kicker, has never attempted a kick at the NFL level, and made only 54 of 75 field goals he attempted in college. Furthermore, he wasn’t even working in sports when the Rams came calling.
Ficken, who graduated with a degree in finance, was working at a Connecticut brokerage firm when the Rams first reached out to him about joining the team, according to Gary Klein and Lindsey Thiry of the Los Angeles Times.
“They said they hoped they never saw me again, which is funny, obviously,” he said. “I think they’re super thrilled for me.
“I’ve talked to them and they’re more than excited for me about the opportunity.”
It’s great to see that Ficken’s former employer is rooting for him. He’ll need all the help he can get to deal with the pressure that comes along with kicking at the professional level.
Ficken tried out for the team on Wednesday, and beat out 11 other kickers for the job. It will be interesting to see what the Rams saw in him when he hits the field at Nissan Stadium for the team’s Week 16 showdown with the Titans on Sunday.