Super Bowl LVIII picks and predictions
Lorenzo Reyes is back and he’s ready for Super Bowl LVIII. This week he’s going in depth with his picks to help you build your bet slips.
Often overlooked, placekickers remain an integral part of the NFL game.
In Super Bowls, with the massive audience, the hype and fanfare and the heightened stage of a championship at stake, that’s potentially magnified when every point becomes crucial in determining the winner of the Lombardi Trophy.
In Super Bowl 58 between the Kansas City Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers, the kicker matchup features an established veteran in Harrison Butker for Kansas City and an unproved rookie in Jake Moody for San Francisco.
Here’s everything you need to know about Moody, who is appearing his first career Super Bowl.
Who is Jake Moody?
Jake Moody, 24, is a rookie who was drafted with the 99th overall selection in the third round of the 2023 NFL draft.
He played college football at Michigan, appearing in 60 games over a span of five seasons (2018-22), setting program records in games played and total points (355). Moody converted 69-of-84 field goal attempts (82.1%) and was perfect on all 148 of his extra point tries during his time with the Wolverines. In 2022, Moody was a first-team All-Big Ten selection and also earned second-team AP All-American honors. His greatest achievement in college football, however, came in 2021, when he won the Lou Groza Award, given to the country’s top placekicker, and also was a consensus first-team All-American and recorded first-team All-Big Ten honors.
Moody is from Northville, Michigan and played high school football at Northville High School.
Jake Moody’s 2023 stats
During the regular season, Moody connected on 21-of-25 field goals, with a long kick of 57 yards. His conversion rate of 84% ranked him 19th this season among qualifying placekickers with at least 20 tries. By comparison, Butker’s conversion rate on field goals this season was 94.3%, which was fourth-best.
Moody was far better on extra points, converting 60-of-61 attempts (98.4%), both of which paced the NFL. In fact, Moody set an NFL record for most consecutive extra point conversions at 60, with his lone miss coming on his final extra-point attempt of the regular season. That record goes back to 2015, when the NFL moved back the extra point to the 15-yard line.
Moody’s 123 total points tied him for 12th-most this season.
It has been a bit of a different story in the playoffs. Moody has struggled, making just 3-of-5 field-goal attempts for a conversion rate of 60%. That trails all conversion rates in the postseason, with the exception of Buffalo Bills placekicker Tyler Bass, who connected on 40% of his tries. Moody has made all seven of his extra points in the postseason.
Moody had misses in both of San Francisco’s playoff games, though he rebounded in each contest; against the Packers in the divisional round, Moody hit a 52-yard field goal early in the fourth quarter to shrink the 49ers deficit, and in the NFC championship game, he drilled a 33-yarder in the middle of the fourth that gave San Francisco its first lead of the game.
Butker, by comparison, has made all seven of his field-goal attempts in the 2023 playoffs and leads all postseason kickers with 28 points, which is eight more than Detroit Lions kicker Michael Badgley, the next-closest player.
Jake Moody’s recent struggles
At Super Bowl 58 Opening Night on Monday, Moody was asked about his pair of missed field goals in the postseason.
“It’s no different than in college,” Moody said, according to NFL.com. “The posts are the same size. Ball is the same. Holder and snapper are just as good, if not better in the NFL. Situationally, I guess it can be a little bit different. There’s a lot more games that are decided by one or two scores as opposed to college. … It’s something that you learn, just being in those situations, you kind of learn how to deal with it, mindset.”