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Greg Joseph Takes Ownership for Late Missed FG; Zimmer Backs Kicker

EAGAN, Minn. — Greg Joseph owned up to his miscue less than 24 hours after missing a game-winning field goal.

Joseph's 37-yard try on the final play of regulation sailed just to the right, leaving the Vikings stunned by a 34-33 loss in Arizona and in an 0-2 hole.

"That's on me, this one's on me," Joseph told the Twin Cities media Monday afternoon. "Trust me, that moment, no one felt that more than me. But it's part of the job I signed up for.

"It's part of an NFL kicker's career and moving forward, excited to be put in that position again and come through for the team because nobody deserved that win more than the guys on the field," Joseph added. "Didn't work out this time, but on to the next."

Joseph said he was actually surprised the ball was pushed to the right, as he said the initial contact from Jordan Berry's hold on the 27-yard line was clean.

"No, it felt good off my foot," Joseph said. "That's why I was kind of surprised when I looked up and saw it right, and that's kind of why I put my hands on my head, was an initial reaction."

Joseph also missed an extra point earlier in the game. He explained he "caught a bit of ground" on that attempt and that he "didn't let my hips get all the way through the kick."

The pair of misses, especially the final one, overshadowed an otherwise strong day for the 27-year-old.

He nailed a pair of 52-yard field goals — one in the second quarter and another in the fourth — and said he felt confident lining up to win it on the game's final play.

"Life of an NFL kicker," Joseph said. "If anything, making some of those longer kicks showed me and everyone that I'm capable of making the shorter ones as well. Just have to do a better job of executing next time.

"Just confidence in me. I know what I'm capable of," Joseph later added. "I had some kicks in that game that I was happy with, but I balance it by having the confidence in me, knowing my work ethic, knowing I'm going to put my best foot forward and just having a short memory and moving on."

Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer said Monday that he has full confidence in Joseph going forward.

"This kid has kicked well. He missed a couple this week," Zimmer said. "That wasn't the reason why we lost the game."

Zimmer doubled down on that support when he was peppered early on with questions about Joseph's status on the team.

"Lots of kickers miss field goals," Zimmer said. "Let's give the kid a break, OK?"

Teammates such as Kirk Cousins and K.J. Osborn publicly had Joseph's back immediately after the game, and Adam Thielen echoed that sentiment Monday afternoon.

"Well, I think the biggest thing is, as a team, we've got to stick together. We can't lose confidence because of one play," Thielen said. "I was able to talk to him in the locker room and say, 'Man, I've been a part of games where I've fumbled in big situations and lost the game.'

"It doesn't define you, and there's going to be an opportunity for him moving forward that's going to be an even bigger kick that he's going to be able to go out there and kick it through there and win us a game," Thielen added. "So I'm excited for him to get back on the field. I'm excited for this team to get back on the field after a tough loss."

Joseph seemingly embraced the good vibes — he wore a hat that said "Kindness. Pass It On." — and said he appreciated the support from his teammates.

"After the game, like I said, no one took it harder than me, because I know what I'm capable of. But I know I'm going to make that kick in the future," Joseph said. "But a lot of the guys came up to my locker, told me they loved me, told me they have my back. Everyone – Dalvin [Cook], Thielen, K.J., Kirk, and the list goes on – C.J. [Ham] – they were letting me know that, 'Hey, we've got your back.'

"This doesn't define me, and they know that. This one kick does not define me as a human or as an athlete," Joseph added. "It can be a make-or-break in the career-type deal, but I promise this is not going to break me. This is only going to propel me. It's only going to motivate me, and I'm just going to put my head down and work, because at the end of the day, that's all I know."

The Vikings have their home opener in Week 3 against the Seahawks. Kickoff is at 3:25 p.m. (CT).