Vinatieri said he never contemplated retirement following Sunday's poor performance.
Colts kicker Adam Vinatieri is working to "get the demons out" of his head before the team's game against the Falcons on Sunday.
Speaking to reporters on Tuesday, Vinatieri said the possibility of retiring never crossed his mind after missing his seventh kick in the past three games last week. Instead, Vinatieri hopes he'll be able to fight his way through one of the worst stretches of his career.
"I'm going to work a lot this week to get those demons so I can go clear-headed, step on the field and just do my job," Vinatieri said, per ESPN. "I think anybody that has had a bad game, or, I dunno, I guess if you go out golfing and you hook a couple balls, are you thinking about it until you get it figured out? I'll spend some time this week working those [demons] out."
Vinatieri missed two extra points during the Colts' 19–17 win over the Titans in Week 2. The poor outing followed a 30–24 overtime loss to the Chargers in which he missed one extra point and two field goals of 46 and 29 yards in Week 1. Vinatieri took responsibility for the Colts' loss, saying he "100% let them down" and saying it felt "lousy, s---y" to leave seven points on the field.
The 46-year-old has now missed five kicks in two games, more than he has had in eight of his 22 full seasons prior to 2019.
Vinatieri told The Athletic's Stephen Holder following Sunday's performance that reporters would "hear from me tomorrow." When reminded that Monday is usually an off day for the Colts, Vinatieri indicated that he would indeed be speaking to media Monday, regardless of the rest of the team.
Vinatieri clarified those comments on Tuesday, saying he never intended to retire.
"That was one those situations that I was walking out of the locker room," Vinatieri said. "Quite frankly, for two decades, we've always had open locker rooms on a Monday, and granted our schedule has changed as of last year. When I walked out saying I'll talk to you guys on Monday, I just needed a little bit more time. Like I said, none of us should assume stuff."
On a conference call on Monday, the Colts announced they would be sticking by Vinatieri, with coach Frank Reich reiterating that the kicker would still be starting for Indianapolis.
Vinatieri signed a one-year extension with the Colts this past offseason to return for his 24th season in the NFL and 11th with the Colts. He made 23 of 27 field goals—including four field goals of 50 yards or longer—during a record-breaking 2018 campaign while becoming the league's all-time leading scorer with 2,600 career points, surpassing Morten Andersen's previous record of 2,544.
The future Hall-of-Famer also set the all-time mark for field goals made (582) and holds the record for most consecutive field goals made (44), postseason field goals (56) and postseason points scored (234). He is also the only player in NFL history to score 1,000 points with two different teams.
The three-time Pro Bowler's 2018 season ended on a low note after he missed a 23-yard field goal and an extra point during Indianapolis's 31–13 playoff loss to the Chiefs in the divisional round.