Kicker Younghoe Koo showing confidence in camp

FLOWERY BRACH — Place-kicker Younghoe Koo was perfect in Saturday’s scrimmage.

Ahead of his third season with the Falcons after being signed in 2019, Koo went 5-for-5 Saturday, highlighted by a 53-yard kick that would have been good from 60.

“I feel good where he’s at confidence-wise,” Falcons coach Arthur Smith said Monday as the team returned to training camp. “He should have a lot of confidence coming from last season. That’s an interesting position because a lot of those guys don’t usually stick on the first team and there are like a pod of guys in there.”

The pod Smith referred to was the special teams room, as Koo is the Falcons’ lone place-kicker on the roster.

In practice, Koo works in the back with the rest of the specialists and practices kickoffs a few times to help the fielding team.

With confidence high and the skill of his leg not lacking, Smith feels there’s one area that the former Georgia Southern kicker can improve upon.

“Right now I don’t think he has the biggest arms for a kicker in the NFC South,” Smith said jokingly of Koo’s upper-body physique. “The guy from Carolina (Joey Slye) does. That’s a challenge I have for Younghoe and we’ll see if he gets there.”

Koo converted 37-of-39 field goals in 2020, his longest being from 54 yards on two occasions. He also made 91.7% of his extra points.