TAMPA, FL - SEPTEMBER 13: Defenders Quincy Black #58, Gaines Adams #90 and Chris Hovan #95 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers attempt to block the kick from Nick Folk #6 of the Dallas Cowboys during the game at Raymond James Stadium on September 13, 2009 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by J. Meric/Getty Images)
Folk has missed four of his last eight attempts, including one in the Thanksgiving Day win over the Raiders a week ago. Coming into the season, the Arizona State product had missed just seven tries in two years; as of this week, he has missed six. Suffice it to say something seems a bit off.
Perhaps the trouble lies in the hip on which Folk had surgery this off-season; or the fact that he's working with a new holder in Mat McBriar; or, very simply, a confidence issue. Not according to Folk himself, though, who insists that none of these have been factors in his inconsistency.
One thing is certain: Folk isn't going anywhere for a while. Head coach Wade Phillips gave the third-year kicker a vote of confidence this week, citing Folk's even personality as a crucial factor in the makeup of an NFL kicker.
"He's a consistent guy as far as a person, and I think that's an important point as far as the kickers that I've been around," Phillips said. "We've kicked him from a good distance a lot. You're not going to make all of them. We expect him to make all of them and he expects to. I think just because of his mind-set he'll come through it all right."
Folk refused to make any concrete excuses, saying simply that he would look to return to form in the coming weeks.
"I don't want to put any blame on anyone else," Folk said after Thursday's win. "It was a tough deal and I just have to get it right from here on out and make a good playoff run."