Koenen explains his blocked punt adventure
Tampa Bay Buccaneers' Michael Koenen is a very strong punter, and routinely booms kickoffs for touchbacks.
But Koenen will rarely get mistaken for a prolific passer. And Koenen admits he shouldn’t have tried to throw the ball from near the Bucs goalline after his punt was blocked less than one minute into the fourth quarter. The ball ended up in the hands of LB Edgar Jones, who ran it in 11 yards down the sideline for a touchdown, bringing the Chiefs to within 21-10.
“I was thinking two points (taking a safety) or get it out of there,” Koenen said. “I should have just fell on it.”
With the Bucs facing 4th and 6 on their own 18, Chiefs RB Shaun Draughn came in clean and blocked Koenen’s punt into the end zone. Koenen raced back and beat Draughn to the ball, picked it up and started to run it out. Koenen said he was trying to throw the ball out of bounds, but he was hit by Draughn just as he got to the goalline, and the ball went right to Jones. It was eventually ruled a fumble recovery, because you can’t throw a pass after a punt was blocked.
“I was surprised,” Jones said. “Once I saw (Koenen) pick the ball up in the end zone, he looked as if he was running the ball, but he just kind of looked at me and threw it. So I’ll take it.”
Koenen has had seven punts blocked in his eight-year career, but said this was the first time he tried a pass. Joked K Connor Barth: “I think his passer rating is probably negative-five.”
-- JOE SMITH