Vikings Kicker Credits Tiger Woods

Vikings Kicker Credits Tiger Woods 1Ryan Longwell
(Phillip Salzman/Flickr)

MINNESOTA VIKINGS KICKER Ryan Longwell made 29 of 34 field goal attempts during the regular season. One was a 50-yard game-winner against the New York Giants to secure the NFC North Division title.

The 34-year-old Longwell (good name for a kicker, by the way) said he got better by watching Tiger Woods work out. Longwell lives in Tiger’s Orlando neighborhood and sometimes rubs sweaty shoulders with the golf phenom at the local gym.

“He’s already the best in the world, but he’s trying to get better, so I kind of looked at that,” Longwell told the St. Paul Pioneer Press. “On top of that, because we are around each other, I get to see how hard he works.

“People don’t realize that he goes out and runs three or four miles on a Tuesday of a tournament week, before his knee injury. I watched him, and I realize I can get better at what I do,” Longwell added.

Longwell also had his best kickoff average (64.5 yards) since his rookie season in 1997. Tiger’s workout approach convinced the kicker to do more endurance work, including push-ups, pull-ups, yoga, jump training and kickboxing.

I started running again in October. Since then, I’ve become a better sleeper.

−The Armchair Golfer

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Neil Sagebiel

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