ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (WIVB) – After cutting ties with veteran kicker Stephen Hauschka, they took a calculated risk going with rookie Tyler Bass. He had a strong training camp and showed off that strong leg of his.
Bass struggled in his NFL debut but finished the game strong in the Bills 27-17 season opening win against the Jets.
He started out making all three extra points but missed his first field goal attempt on a 38-yard try, however, looking at the replay it appeared he may have made it. But when the ball goes over the upright the play is can’t be reviewed.
On the Bills next offensive series, Bass missed a 34-yard field goal attempt.
In the fourth quarter, he closed out the game making a 22-yarder and a 19-yard field goal on two straight drives.
And despite Bass’s early struggles, it’s not time to hit the panic button.
“I think number one Tyler is a young man that is mentally tough and this was his first game as well not even a preseason game but his first game overall so acknowledging that I think for all of our young players is important,” head coach Sean McDermott said.
“That said he takes great ownership of where he needs to work and what he needs to work on so we are very confident, not just myself but every teammate Tyler has on this football team is very confident in what he can do now he just needs to continue to grow and learn and I’m confident he’ll do that.”
The Bills have a number of young players on their roster and having realistic expectations for their success is key.
“Very few if any have come in and had that straight line of success. I’m not sure that exists, maybe for Michael Jordan, I don’t know but I haven’t been around many in my 20 some years in this league that have experienced that type of trajectory if you will so it’s to be expected. You’ve got some young players and we’ve just got to stand by them and develop them on and off the field,” McDermott explained.
“The part that I loved yesterday was the way the guys were supporting Tyler and the guys were supporting one another when we were facing some of those tough moments in the game, whether it was guys supporting Josh, Josh supporting defensive players, it was just a great back and forth of positive energy and team work at its finest.”