Rookie season `just so surreal'

Ravens Q&A Sam Koch

January 11, 2007|By Edward Lee | Edward Lee,Sun Reporter

Rookie punter Sam Koch ranked seventh in the AFC in net average (37.6 yards per punt) and ninth in gross average (43.0). But Koch excelled in pinning opponents deep in their territory, placing 12 punts inside the 10-yard line (second most in the NFL) and six inside the 5. With Koch, the Ravens registered 30 punts inside the opponent's 20, which ranked fifth in the league. What was your best Christmas gift last month?

Probably the watch that my wife [Nikki] gave me. It was a Seiko. I had kind of hinted to her that I'd like a new watch, and she got it. And just being able to see all of the kids [Ryan, Braxtyn and Kamdyn] open up their presents. This was just a year that we could give them a little more, and we got them a lot of things that they wanted. So we were excited to see them open them up, and it was just a great time. What is your favorite postseason memory?

It would probably be last year when I had a tremendous Alamo Bowl game. [Koch averaged 51.5 yards on eight punts - including five of 50 yards or more - for Nebraska against Michigan.] I even got to run the ball a little bit on a bad snap. I couldn't get the first down, though. Describe how the perfect punt feels.

When you hardly feel it hit off of your foot, you know it's a good punt. When it comes off of your foot, you'll know. That's why we try to fade away from looking up right after the punt. We just keep on looking down because we, as punters and kickers, know if it's going to be a good one by how it hits off of our foot. Could you have imagined a rookie season like this?

No, I would never have envisioned this because I know how hard it is to get to the position like we are in. I would never have dreamed of being with a team that was this good because it's so hard to get into the playoffs like everybody says. But I'm glad I'm here, and I'm having fun. I still don't know if I realize I am in this position. I talk to my wife, and we still can't even realize that we're here because it's just so surreal.

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