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A 300-Pound Jumping Jack

From Arrowhead Stadium

Dallas nose tackle Jay Ratliff is listed at 303 pounds. There’s a very good chance he weighs more than that, maybe a lot more.

He’s one of the most talented and unheralded defensive players in the NFL, Not bad for a seventh-round draft choice out of Auburn. The Chiefs struggled all day to handle Ratliff, who abused Chiefs center Rudy Niswanger and everybody else that tried to help.

But the biggest play that Ratliff made in the game did not come from his power. It came from his leaping ability.

It was Ratliff who blocked the 53-yard field goal try by Chiefs kicker Ryan Succop with just over three minutes to play. He did it by jumping over long snapper Thomas Gafford and Mike Goff, who was in the left guard position on the FG-PAT protection unit.

So stunning was his leap that Gafford did not even know what happened.

“We blocked it the way we always block,” said Gafford. “Mike and I had no idea what happened. None. I’m still not sure.”

On a field goal attempt of that length, the blocking unit is always going to make sure they stay down because the kick is going to come out low from the spot it’s held. But Gafford said he and Goff did nothing different in how they blocked the play than they did on earlier FG attempts by Succop.

And whether the kick had a low trajectory is not something anybody knows because when Ratliff blocked it, the ball had barely left the hands of holder Dustin Colquitt.

“Ratliff can jump,” Dallas coach Wade Phillips said. “He made a big play that should have put the game away for us.”

The blocked FG got overshadowed by the events of what happened afterwards. Three plays after Ratliff’s leap, Tony Romo and Miles Austin hooked up for their first TD. More would come afterwards.

But the Chiefs were still shaking their head about the 300-pound high jumper.

“I’m sure we’ll probably take a look at what we’re doing in there,” Gafford predicted of the blocking scheme and techniques used by the protection unit. “We can’t let that play happen.”

7 Responses to “A 300-Pound Jumping Jack”

  • October 11, 2009  - booger says:

    the announcers in last weeks game against the Giants said the left G on the FG unit (Goff) sticks his head down and they picked up on it(the giants special teams coaches) and would try to exploit it. I guess tv telecasts aren’t reported to the GM or Coach. I can understand that. Sometimes something simple like that info would help out.

    Hopefully it gets corrected this week. Embarrassing how low of center of gravity Goff gets on the FG trys. Looks like he is the one snapping when it is obviously Gafford. He has the excuse to do that. Goff doesn’t unless he just likes counting the blades of grass.

  • October 11, 2009  - booger says:

    speaking of Goff, Alleman looked better when Goff went out with a injury. It’s painfully obvious that Goff doesn’t have the gas left in the tank they thought/hoped he would when they signed him.

    With Albert hurt and his injury unknown, it could be a safe bet to assume they will activate Barry Richardson from the taxi squad, or pick up another player capable of playing LT. Maybe Herb Taylor though that depends on what the new staff thinks of him.

    Either way, let Ndukwe and Alleman fight it out for the RG spot and send Goff packing. Sometimes players are too proud to admit they have nothing left.

  • October 11, 2009  - booger says:

    Really, i am having reacurring nightmares of Adrian Jones at RG with Herm saying the OL just needs to jell. Somebody stop the pain.

  • October 11, 2009  - Merwin in NY says:

    booger says:
    the announcers in last weeks game against the Giants said the left G on the FG unit (Goff) sticks his head down and they picked up on it(the giants special teams coaches) and would try to exploit it.
    Yea I heard that too. I was surprised the Giants didn’t do anything about it. I guess the Cowboys had someone watching the game and heard that, too bad for the Chiefs. I think there was a good effort put in today and I hope we can pull off a victory next week against the Redskins. Go Chiefs!

  • October 11, 2009  - aPauled says:

    -”Either way, let Ndukwe and Alleman fight it out for the RG spot and send Goff packing.”

    My thoughts exactly. As often as Goff gets beat on the O-line, not sure why he would even be out there with the FG team.

  • October 12, 2009  - Blake says:

    Exactly right Booger, Allenman actually moved some people when and were running the ball with success. Alleman should start over Goff, Goff is slightly better in pass protection but Alleman looked a heck of a lot better with the running game.

    We also found out that Wade Smith is NOT a LT. lol

  • October 12, 2009  - Joebird Jackson says:

    Wade Smith is not a LT…barely serviceable back up as guard. Herb Taylor played a full game at LT last year and did an adequate job. I thought for sure he’d be our RT. He must not be big enough. He’s way better than Richardson as a LT. He’s more of a dancing bear than road grader. Goff has looked very bad. I hope we get Herbie back to either play for the injured Albert or to take Goff’s spot.

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