Redskins cut rookie kicker Zach Hocker, sparing Kai Forbath

August 30, 2014

Rookie Zach Hocker missed a field goal attempt in Thursday’s preseason finale (Toni L. Sandys/The Washington Post)

The Redskins spent a seventh-round pick on Arkansas place kicker Zach Hocker this spring, hoping to bring in a youngster with a strong leg who would challenge incumbent Kai Forbath.

Their competition lasted all preseason, with the rookie shining initially, hitting a pair of field goals and making a special-teams tackle during the opener against New England, while Forbath was short on his lone attempt from 46 yards.

But Saturday morning, roughly eight hours before the NFL’s deadline for final roster cuts, it was Hocker who was released.

It all came down to Thursday’s preseason finale at Tampa Bay, in which Hocker missed his lone field-goal attempt, from 39 yards, wide right. Forbath delivered from 45 yards to open the scoring.

Forbath, a third-year veteran, finished the preseason 4 for 5 on field goals and made all of his point-after attempts and show improved distance on his kickoffs.

Hocker was 2 for 3 on field goals.

Gruden voiced satisfaction with both heading into Thursday preseason finale, saying he felt the Redskins would do well with either. After Hocker’s miss, the coach conceded the rookie “missed a great opportunity.”

Follow Mike Jones and Liz Clarke on Twitter for up-to-the minute news on cuts. For all Insider posts involving roster moves, click here. The roster itself is here. For the league-wide transaction wire, click here.

Liz Clarke currently covers the Washington Redskins for The Washington Post, she has also covered five Olympic Games, two World Cups and written extensively about college sports, tennis and auto racing.
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Mike Jones · August 30, 2014