4 most surprising Cincinnati Bengals of the 2021 season

Cincinnati Bengals defensive end Trey Hendrickson - Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports
Cincinnati Bengals defensive end Trey Hendrickson - Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports /
3 of 5
Evan McPherson, Cincinnati Bengals
Evan McPherson, Cincinnati Bengals (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images) /

Cincinnati Bengals’ Biggest Surprises – Evan McPherson

Another player who was taken in the 2021 draft and shined as a rookie is kicker Evan McPherson, aka “Shooter McPherson”, aka “Money Mac”, aka… you get the idea.

It’s unusual for teams to take a kicker with a draft pick but after the NFL moved back the extra point mark, extra points were no longer automatic and kickers have become as important as ever. The Bengals look like geniuses now though, don’t they?

It also seemed to get into the heads of kickers, many began to crumble, and kickers are now no longer a dime-a-dozen. The only kicker that is “automatic” is Justin Tucker, who Bengals fans are all too aware of.

The Buccaneers even tried to draft a kicker in 2016. They took the most accurate college kicker ever in Roberto Aguayo from Florida State but, he didn’t even pan out, giving more fuel to the fire of using a draft pick of kicker discourse.

In total McPherson only missed five field goals and two extra points in the entire regular season. If you take out the Green Bay game, McPherson would have a 91% field goal percentage as a rookie. I mention that game because that was a weird one where both kickers were off, even the great Mason Crosby.

Once into the playoffs, however, McPherson was automatic. Money Mac didn’t miss a thing in all four postseason games. He was so confident that as he took the field to kick the game-winner against the Titans he called his shot to Joe Burrow.

Everyone talks about Joe Cool, but McPherson is just as cool. So cool that during halftime he didn’t even go to the locker room. Instead, he enjoyed the halftime show.

This kid has ice in his veins. It’s the thing you want in your kicker.

The Bengals have had many kicking issues in the past but that appears to be all behind them. Cincinnati has its quarterback and placekicker of the future.