2021 was a career season. Calendar year 2022 brought a Super Bowl ring and new personal bests. 2023 is on track to be a very happy New Year for Rams placekicker Matt Gay – with a pretty good opportunity to cash in.
For the first time since he came into the league as a fifth-round selection of Tampa Bay in 2019, Gay is about to hit the open market as an unrestricted free agent.
"Still getting better, still improving," Gay said Monday at the Rams team facility in Thousand Oaks. "Buy yeah, I feel like I belong (in the NFL)."
After being released by the Bucs before his second season, Gay signed on to the Indianapolis practice squad. The now-28-year old was called to Los Angeles to help solve some kicking woes in Week 11 of 2020.
"Since we've gotten Matt Gay here, he's really stabilized that position," head coach Sean McVay said about his Pro Bowl specialist, who converted a career-long 58-yard field goal in New Orleans earlier this season.
More recently, in a seven-day span last week, Gay blasted a 55-yard field goal in freezing conditions at Lambeau Field,
then did it again from the same distance on Christmas Day at SoFi. He has now made seven field goal tries of 50-plus yards in 2022, setting a new single-season career high.
"When it's cold like that, the ball's frozen, it doesn't compress," Gay said of his bomb in Green Bay. "It's kind of like slapping a rock.
"Honestly your foot kind of goes a little numb… I think it was the first time ever, the day after the game, my foot kind of felt a little sore."
Gay was our guest on this week's Rams Revealed, where we enjoyed a wide-ranging conversation. From his breakdown of the World Cup Final to how his Utah Utes will perform in next week's Rose Bowl against Penn State. Gay gives us an insightful glimpse into the life of one of the NFL's top kickers.
Every episode of this season can be found on the Rams YouTube page or your favorite podcast platform. Gay and the Rams will be back at SoFi Stadium on Sunday to face the Chargers.