ARLINGTON, Texas — Greg Zuerlein seemed done after 2015, when the kicker once dubbed “Legatron” missed 10 of 30 field-goal attempts and coaches openly said he would have to compete for his job.
The machine is humming again. Zuerlein made all seven of his field-goal attempts Sunday against Dallas, including four from beyond 40 yards, and provided the difference in the Rams’ five-point victory.
“Automatic,” Rams quarterback Jared Goff said of Zuerlein. “He’s absolutely nails. For the most part, you get inside the 30(-yard line) and the first thing you think about is, ‘I’ve got points. Don’t be careless with it, because I’ve got points.’ Greg is nails. How many did he have today?”
Seven, the most ever by a Rams kicker in a single game. Jeff Wilkins kicked six field goals in 2006, but in a huge road victory, in front of more than 90,000 screaming fans, Zuerlein accounted for 23 of the Rams’ 35 points. Never, in team history, has a Rams player scored more than 24 points in a game.
“That’s the way the game went,” Zuerlein said. “Fortunately, we made them all. I think we helped the team win. It’s not about who is scoring points. It’s about winning at the end of the day.”
Zuerlein has made all 14 of his field-goal attempts this season, plus all 14 extra-point attempts.
Coach Sean McVay wasn’t with the Rams in 2015 when Zuerlein struggled. Then-coach Jeff Fisher said Zuerlein would be challenged in 2016, but the threat of that must have been enough, because the Rams never signed another kicker and Zuerlein made 19 of 22 field-goal attempts.
Zuerlein, who also didn’t miss a kick in preseason, has been perfect since McVay’s arrival.
“He won the game today,” McVay said. “He’s Mr. Automatic. … I can’t say enough about that unit. Jake McQuaide does an excellent job with the snaps and Johnny (Hekker) with the holds and then Greg has been outstanding. He can’t play any better than what he’s doing right…