Carolina Panthers returner Ted Ginn let one kick bounce Sunday, but he grabbed the one that counted.
Ginn cleanly fielded Greg Zuerlein’s onsides kick attempt with 31 seconds left to seal the Panthers’ 13-10 victory over the Los Angeles Rams at L.A. Memorial Coliseum.
Zuerlein hit a hard grounder rather than the more traditional onsides attempt, in which kickers try to get the ball to bounce up high along the sideline.
Zuerlein presumably was trying to hit the ball off one of the Panthers’ front-line players and get the Rams to catch the carom. But he missed the first line of Panthers and Ginn retreated to grab the bouncing ball at the Carolina 24, setting up Cam Newton’s game-ending kneel-down.
Ginn said he wasn’t sure exactly what the Rams were trying to do with the kick.
“I think they were trying to actually hit somebody with the ball and make it bounce back to them, so they could get an easy play,” he said.
“I’m just trying to be as relaxed as I can, as calm as I can so I can recover the ball so we can win the ball game.”
Ginn had a tougher time fielding a Johnny Hekker punt in the first half, letting it bounce and roll for a 75-yarder that caused a big change in field position. It didn’t end up costing the Panthers any points, and Ginn thought he might have been interfered with.
“I really feel there should have been a penalty,” he said. “I had a fair catch and the guy got in my way, didn’t give me a clear path to get to the ball.”