POSTED: Thursday, October 27, 2011 - 6:38pm
UPDATED: Thursday, October 27, 2011 - 6:43pm
Josh Scobee has a list of goals posted in his locker. At the top is to make at least 90 percent of his field goals, something he's only accomplished once in eight seasons.
He has incentive to get it done, too.
Scobee is in the final year of his contract with the Jacksonville Jaguars.
He wants to stay in Jacksonville, and assuming he finishes the season like he started, there's little chance the Jaguars (2-5) would let him go.
Scobee is one of five full-time, NFL place-kickers who haven't missed this season.
Scobee is 14 for 14 on field goals, including nine from beyond 40 yards, heading into Sunday's game at Houston.
He provided all of Jacksonville's scoring in a 12-7 victory against
Baltimore on Monday night and became just the sixth player in NFL
history to kick three field goals of 50 yards or longer in one game.
"He's automatic," tight end Marcedes Lewis said. "He's like a video game."
The Jaguars need every point, too.
Jacksonville has the NFL's worst offense and has scored just 84 points, the second fewest in the league.
Scobee has accounted for more than 57 percent of the scoring, making him as strong a candidate to be the team's Most Valuable Player as running back Maurice Jones-Drew or linebacker Paul Posluszny.
"That makes me a little more excited for my job because it makes it really important for each field goal I attempt," said Scobee, named AFC Special Teams Player of the Week. "This year, obviously, we've had some struggles putting the ball in the end zone. It makes me have to focus more. I like that. It doesn't let me relax. It allows me to stay focused the entire game. Sometimes it's tough to have that mental focus for 60 minutes."
Scobee has made at least one field goal in 15 consecutive games, a franchise record.
"He always can make it," coach Jack Del Rio said. "He's a pretty confident guy. He's been playing well."
But what Scobee does down the stretch, especially as cold weather and blustery conditions become more of a factor in the second half of the season, will matter most.
Scobee also made his first 14 field goals last season. He missed six of his final 14 attempts, though - a disappointing finish that motivated him during the offseason.
Coach Jack Del Rio challenged Scobee publicly to make 90 percent or better this season. Scobee accepted and is reminded of it every day when he looks into his locker.
His other goals include leading the league in touchbacks - difficult to do since Jacksonville has kicked off less often than every other team expect St. Louis - and making every kick in practice.
"I want to make every single kick, and that's the goal," Scobee said. "That requires focus throughout the week, too. You notice I keep using the word focus. That's the thought that goes through my head all week and all game. Focus, focus, focus. It's a big thing to be able to stay that focused the entire season."
Scobee has never made the Pro Bowl, but would love to have that on his resume - especially with contract negotiations looming. But he doesn't want to think about that for fear of losing focus.
He and his agent also decided before the season to avoid contract talk until after the season because Scobee doesn't want any distractions.
"I want to worry about the season and my performance and not so
worried about a contract," Scobee said. "I've seen guys in the past, not so much here but other places, that were worried more about their contract and that distracted them from having a good season."