Fleming's lack of confidence hurting

JONATHAN HUNTINGTON -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 8:30 AM ET

Confidence is almost everything for a kicker.

At the end of last year, Sean Fleming was riding high and was nearly unstoppable, connecting successfully on 21 of his 23 field-goal attempts over the final seven games.

MISSES PILING UP

But right now, Fleming isn't full of confidence - and it's showing.

After the first two regular-season games, the 15-year veteran is one-for-four in the field-goal department, including a bad miss from the 25-yard line on Saturday night.

While it's not time to panic in the Eskimo locker-room, the problem needs to get fixed soon.

"I think it is just a confidence issue with me right now with Jason (Johnson), but it has nothing to do with him," said Fleming.

Johnson is Fleming's new holder this year with the departure of Jason Maas - and so far, Fleming is following his old pattern.

Every year that he has had a new holder, his field-goal percentage has dropped the first season.

"It is nothing that Jason is doing," repeated Fleming. "I just need to have confidence in that he is going to get the ball down.

"Jason did a good job (Saturday). I think I'm a little hesitant going toward the ball and then at the last second I'm swinging a little too fast."

The confidence issue can be traced back to the Eskimos' first regular-season game in Calgary, when Fleming missed an extra point after Johnson didn't hold the ball properly.

"I think the slip off the tee (in the extra-point attempt) in the first game causes me right now just to be hesitant," added Fleming.

FLEMING REGAINS PUNTING ROLE

On the positive side, Fleming officially regained his punting role, as Maciocia will use him for both jobs this weekend in Winnipeg.

EXTRA POINTS: The Eskimos don't practise today, but return to the field tomorrow before travelling Friday.


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