For this episode of Behind the Buccaneers, I caught up with all three specialist: kicker Matt Gay, punter Bradley Pinion and long snapper Zach Triner just in time for the holidays. And come to find out, punted Bradley Pinion may have a Christmas gift to thank for his eventual career. Plus, Matt Gay's 'fake' British accent and how Zach Triner became a long snapper. Read below for the transcript or click the link to listen to the podcast.
All you guys are family guys…
Bradley: We all have wives. Wives and lives.
You have a kid.
Matt: Oh yeah!
How is Ollie?
Matt: Ollie is good. He's [knocks on wood] 10 weeks –
Bradley: [In a British accent] Olivah!
Your wife is from England, right? Does she still have her accent?
Bradley: That's why we say Olivah!
Do you think Ollie will have an accent?
Matt: I'll make sure he does.
Bradley: Matt also gets a fake accent when he hangs out with his wife too much. I don't know if there is such a thing as too much. But he gets an accent, when we went to London...
Matt: Ok, don't say fake. It's not fake.
Bradley: It's totally a fake accent.
Matt: Fake is me trying to do it. I don't try. I don't consciously say, 'I'm gonna talk in a British accent.'
Bradley: When we were in London, he left to go hang out with some of Millie's family and he came back with a British accent and we're like Matt, what are you doing right now?
Matt: It just naturally happens.
Zach: I get it because when I go home I have like a Boston accent that gets a little stronger. It's not something I think about. It's just like oh whoa, what the heck? Was that me that just said that?
Matt: Yeah, I don't think about it. It just happens. I might start thinking about it – make sure that little kid has it.
Zach: It would be way better if you were going to like a school interview and your kid had a British accent.
Matt: That's what I'm saying. I'm might go home and make sure I speak like that just he'll have a little bit of an accent. It makes you sound cool.
There are people that want their kids to speak two languages. You just want Oliver to have a different accent.
Matt: I just want him to have an accent. That's it. We can make it happen.
And Bradley you have dogs! You launched your Punts for Pups program.
Bradley: Three. Yes, so every punt inside the 20, my wife and I, we sponsor – which is basically just pay for the adoption of- a dog at the Hillsborough County Pet Resource Center. It's awesome.
Your wife was telling me how you want to take a dog home every time you go to the shelter.
Bradley: Yes, this will hopefully prevent that [laughs]. Three is enough for my family.
You have a yard now though, you could just have all the dogs!
Matt: All the dogs.
Bradley: Yeah, no, my wife doesn't believe in outside dogs, so all our dogs are inside dogs and our smallest dog is 70 pounds. We have a 70, 72 and 75-pound. That's their weights.
Zach: He may not take home any more dogs, but that has spilled over to us now. I know Matt was looking for another dog. I was looking for a dog now.
Bradley: Between the three of us, we might have 10 dogs before it's all said and done.
Zach: I had dogs growing up and we were looking into getting a dog. I said no for the longest time and then I stayed at Bradley's house for OTAs and the three dogs over there, I was like uh oh. I think I have the fever. Puppy fever.
So, has baby fever spilled out or is it just puppy fever?
[All cough and laugh]
Matt: I have a dog! I have a cavapoo.
Bradley: What's that?
Matt: Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and a poodle.
Bradley: A.K.A. my dog would eat it for breakfast.
Do your dogs have play dates?
Bradley: No, because my dogs would eat their dog.
What kind of dog would you get, Za-
Zach: -A silver Great Dane. Not that I've looked into it or anything.
So basically you just want a bigger dog that could eat Bradley's dogs?
Zach: I had Mastiffs growing up, so if you've ever seen The Sandlot. That's a mastiff. So I've always been a big dog guy. That would be the small dog to big dog with us.
Yeah, it's like small, medium and large.
Bradley: Well that's what we did. We have Nala, Nellie and Novie. We started with Nala and Nala's 70 pounds. Then we got Nellie and Nellie is 72 pounds. Then we got Novie and Novie is 75 pounds. So we just keep getting bigger.
Matt: I'm just going to buy a bear. It's going to be a pet bear.
To compensate for your cavapoo?
Bradley: Gotta compensate somehow [laughing].
Zach: There was a guy I worked with at Fidelity who had a half wolf, half dog.
Matt: So sick.
I had one that lived below me once. She would howl.
Zach: That's what he said. A real howl, too.
Did you just say you worked at Fidelity?
Ok, how did you become a long snapper? I feel like nobody has the same path to long snapper.
Zach: I luckily had a coach in high school – all right, we were at a high school camp and it's like dog days. I'm playing o-line, playing both ways in high school, so you're playing everything. I'm like, I really don't want to go do these offensive line drills. And there's guys over there not moving and they're just throwing a ball between their legs, I should probably learn how to do that so I can get out of this offensive line drill. So, I played that and then had a coach, Coach Reardon, if he's listening, helped me out. I ended up being pretty good at it.
Listen, long snappers have very long careers.
Zach: It's tough to get in the carousel, but once you're on there, it's usually a long ride.
Ok, now I'm just picturing different long snappers going up and down on a carousel.
[Laughing] Oop, now time to get off the ride! Look at me now.
I know you started in soccer, Matt. But did you start in soccer, Bradley?
Bradley: Technically, yeah. I started playing football in seventh grade. So fun fact, my grandpa played for Dallas. Cowboys. And he was a punter, also.
Zach: I don't think I knew that.
Matt: I definitely didn't.
Bradley: Yeah, it was a very short stint. Half a year, I think. It wasn't even the whole year. But I played soccer at four, I had an older brother, so I did whatever my older brother did. He played soccer. So, I started playing soccer at four and I could kick a soccer ball a really long way. Got a football for Christmas going into seventh grade. Went out to our local field and I was just throwing it around. My dad put it on the ground and I kicked like a 35-yard field goal. First time I ever touched a football and my dad was like, hang on do that again. I did it again. So he was like, let's get you some professional help with this and that's kind of how it got started. My grandpa of course always pushed me because he saw me kick a soccer ball. I actually used to hate punting.
Why did you hate it?
Bradley: Punters get no glory.
You're right. It's a thankless job.
Bradley: It's a thankless job. I always wanted to kick field goals but I wasn't built for kicking field goals. I'm a little too tall.
Is that a thing? You can't be tall and kick field goals?
Bradley: It's harder. You have to get under the ball a little more. So it puts a little more stress on the body.
Matt: Your feet, too. Most kickers have small feet.
Do you have small feet?
Matt: For my size, I'd say. I'm like a size 9.5-10. So, smaller feet.
Bradley: Yeah, I'm like a 12. So, my dad like forced me to keep punting because he knew I was too big. Actually had more offers to kick field goals in college than I did punt but I took the punting offer and look at me now.
Moral of the story. Look at you guys now. And I know you started in soccer, Matt.
Bradley: Shoot. He just started playing football.
Did you just not get enough of an adrenaline rush in soccer that you wanted to add in the potential that people were going to hit you?
Matt: [laughs] Nah.
Zach: He never scored when he was playing soccer, so he had to find a way to get points.
Matt: That's messed up. I scored too much… is what it was. I'm used to hat tricks, so I just thought I might just do it in one kick.