AFC Notes: Matt Gay, Shad Khan, Colts, Jaguars, Titans


Colts K Matt Gay feels like he had a “down year” in 2023 after missing eight field goals and one extra point. In the end, he’s using last season as a learning experience. 

“I feel like last year, for me, a bit of a down year by my standards coming off some good years. Had a lot of kicks that were right there, and again that doesn’t matter, kicking’s black and white, it either went in or it didn’t. So I had a lot of kicks that hit the upright, or things like that, so definitely was not up to my standards last year. A lot that I can learn from, and looking forward to Year 2 to improve and come back better,” Gay said, via James Adams of 1075TheFan. 

Gay acknowledged the mental challenges involved with kicking consistently and is trying to not get hung up on negative moments. 

“It comes and goes. There are years where I’ve looked back, and it was like, there was not a single thought to it. Where I wasn’t in my own way, and it was just kind of jog on, kick the ball, jog off. Then, it’s kind of one of those spiral things [that] you try to avoid, where one hits the upright, and then it’s like ‘Oh, why?’ and then you start thinking a little bit more, and then the next one you go out and start thinking a little bit more…if you can just avoid all that and stay out of your own way, not think too much…make sure you’re process orientated, you have your process, you have your steps, you have your rhythm. Then just not hanging over it too much, trying to keep the swing thoughts out of the head, and just kind of make it reactionary, and ‘see ball, kick ball’. When that snap goes, you can kind of just react to it, be an athlete and go get it. That’s when I’m [at] my best.”


Jaguars’ owner Shad Khan still has a sour taste from last season’s collapse, where Jacksonville was unable to win any of the final six games of the regular season to lose its lead in the AFC South. 

“Personally, for me, not to be able to win two of the last six games … it still stinks,” Khan said, via John Oehser of the team’s site. “Even though the season’s over, I still can’t believe it.”

Khan said he’s spoken to players and coaches about how they can avoid a late-season debacle again. 

“When you talk to the players, and talk to the coaches, it’s all been about, ‘Why did this happen?’ — and more importantly, ‘What are we doing so it never happens?'” Khan said.

Khan wants his coaching staff to focus on developing young players given they will never be big spenders in the free agent market every year. 

“I think there’s a sea change for us — and this is for our coaching, that they have to develop young players,” Khan said. “Our solution isn’t going to be we’re going to be signing free agents every year. We don’t have the ability. Bottom line is that young talent has to be developed. The coaching, the coaching staff, their priorities have to change. Their mindset has to change. That’s where we’re going to get our future players. We cannot have this addiction to free agents.”


Titans OLB Arden Key said DC Dennard Wilson brings a lot of swagger and attention to detail to their defense. 

“The intensity (Dennard Wilson) got, the detail and we don’t move on until everything is fixed,” Key said, via Paul Kuharsky. “And the detail he got, the swag he got that he comes in with everyday, man, it’s going to be exciting.”

Key reflected on their previous coaching staff, saying they never worked to correct their mistakes.

Hell yeah,” Key said. “Yes, we moved on. If we messed up, we didn’t fix it. And now, this year, when we mess up, we don’t move on until we fix it.”

  • Titans DT Jeffery Simmons touched on the differences under Wilson: “I honestly feel like the culture has changed tremendously. It’s a different environment, I would say. I’m looking forward to it. With a guy like Dennard… this guy right here he’s different. His energy, what he brings to the game and just the type of defense where I want to play in.” (SiriusXM NFL Radio)

Looking for the latest NFL Insider News & Rumors?

Be sure to follow NFL Trade Rumors on TWITTER and FACEBOOK for breaking NFL News and Rumors for all 32 teams!

Leave a Reply