Bills kicking battle a “classic matchup”

The Bills Report

Buffalo Bills kicker Stephen Hauschka looks after a field goal during the first half of an NFL preseason football game against the Indianapolis Colts, Thursday, Aug. 8, 2019, in Orchard Park, N.Y. (AP Photo/David Dermer)

Heath Farwell is excited about his kicking battle.

In one corner, the Bills have 35 year-old Stephen Hauschka. He’s a 12 year veteran who’s made big kicks, won Super Bowls, been there and done that.

In the other corner, there’s rookie Tyler Bass. A young talent with a monster leg who says he’s hit field goals from 75 yards out.

“A classic camp matchup,” Farwell said. “A vet who’s made big kicks and still doing it. A young kid coming in hungry to take his job. It’s a cool matchup to watch.”

The hard part for Farwell and head coach Sean McDermott is deciding which kicker to take into the most hyped Bills season this millennium. Without preseason games, it’s much harder to evaluate the competition in a game situation. That goes especially for Bass, who Farwell admits is “unproven”.

“We’re trying to put them in all those pressure situations,” Farwell said. “We’ll bring them up at the end of practice. We’ll bring them up in the middle of practice.”

One tactic is forcing the kickers to make the same kick back to back. Farwell says it’s something the Bills are also doing with the punting battle between Corey Bojorquez and Kaare Vedvik.

“There’s a reason for that. Let’s see going back and forth,” Farwell said. “Can you see the guy in front of you make a good punt or a good kick and what are you going to do with that?”

Farwell says Hauschka and Bass could not be more different in the avenues to which they approach winning the job. He’s confident the Bills will decide on the right guy despite the truncated preseason.

“The good players, you’ll find them,” Farwell says. “You’ll see them in practice. You’ll see them in drills. You’ll see them in the classroom.”

Farwell can’t wait to see how it all plays out.

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