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Monday, October 12, 2015

Cleveland Browns Kicker, Punter & Snapper News

 
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October 11, 2015 - Travis Coons kicks OT game winner over Ravens
 “It feels good. A kick's a kick. It's just the last points on the board, so it doesn't really feel any different,' Coons said. 'It's huge to get this win but it wasn't just me that put points on the board. It was the whole team.' The Browns needed every last point on a day when 60 minutes wasn’t enough to settle the team’s AFC North opener. And when Cleveland’s red zone offense faltered in the first half, Coons was there to help the Browns chip away at a Ravens’ lead that grew to double digits on multiple occasions. Coons’ game-winner, a 32-yard no-doubter that capped an 11-play drive in overtime, was his fourth of the game and 11th of the season. Including extra points, Coons hasn’t missed since he beat out Carey Spear for the job midway through the preseason." - Browns

September 1, 2015 - kicker Travis Coons wins kicking competition, Carey Spear released
"For the record, Coons was 3-for-3 on PATs and made his only field goal attempt — a 41-yarder against the Bills. Spear was 2-for-2 on field goals and 4-for-4 on PATs.... coach Pettine on Aug. 31 hinted a kicker would be among those cut to get the roster to 75. Now he wants to see how Coons responds on Sept. 3 in Chicago against the Bears in the final preseason game. 'Statistically, it was almost a dead heat, especially when you put all of the practice stuff in,' Pettine said. 'I would say that he’s got a slightly bigger leg. Carey was a guy I thought got the ball up in the air a little bit better so you could really compare the kicks, but Travis has a slightly bigger leg, but it was close. It was not an easy decision'." - News-Herald

June 6, 2015 - trade for punter Andy Lee
The Browns on Saturday shipped a 2017 seventh-round pick to the San Francisco 49ers in exchange for three-time Pro Bowl punter Andy Lee, a source involved in the swap told NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport. The team later confirmed they acquired Lee. Lee became expendable after the Niners drafted Bradley Pinion in the fifth round of this year's draft. Also expendable: Browns punter Spencer Lanning, who was released on Saturday after the deal went down, the team announced. Lanning finished 17th in the NFL last season with 39.2 net yards per kick. Lee finished 15th in that category with a net of 39.6 yards, while his gross average of 46.8 yards was sixth-best league-wide. The 11-year veteran also made three Pro Bowls while never missing a game for the 49ers since being picked by the team in the sixth round of the 2004 NFL Draft." - NFL

May 29, 2015 - long snapper Christian Yount released
"The Browns waived veteran Christian Yount on Friday, indicating Charley Hughlett will receive a chance to take up the torch at long snapper. The franchise telegraphed the move when it signed Hughlett off the practice squad of the Kansas City Chiefs on Dec. 24, four days before the 2014 season finale. Hughlett was inactive for the last game. Yount, 26, appeared in 53 games with the Browns and had been with them since replacing Ryan Pontbriand in 2011." - Akron Beacon Journal

May 11, 2015 - kicker Garrett Hartley released
Hartley, a seven-year pro, filled in for Billy Cundiff for two games last year and went 3-for-3 on field goals.... leaving them with two first-year kickers, including local product Casey Spear of Mayfield High.... The notion of two first-year kickers, including Travis Coons out of Washington, might seem daunting, but special teams coordinator Chris Tabor likes them both and is eager to see if one of them can nail down the kicking chores in camp." - Plain Dealer


May 10, 2015 - kicking competition
The Browns' kicker competition is "wide open" according to special teams coordinator Chris Tabor. Cleveland currently has three kickers on the roster -- veteran Garrett Hartley, and and youngsters Travis Coon and Casey Spear. They might bring in different competition depending on how things go this offseason." - Dawgs by Nature

May 2, 2015 - kicker Marvin Kloss invited or signed
Undrafted kicker Marvin Kloss from USF was either signed or invited for a tryout, depending on which reports you read.

March 6, 2015 - punter Spencer Lanning re-signed
"The Browns have re-signed exclusive rights free agent punter Spencer Lanning, general manager Ray Farmer announced Friday. Lanning, 26, averaged 44.3 yards per punt during the 2014 season, a career high. Twenty-five of his 93 punts landed inside the 20-yard line, including an NFL-high five against the Colts. Lanning’s net average was 39.2, also a career high, and Cleveland ranked 15th in the league in the category." - Browns

December 30, 2014 - kickers Travis Coons and Carey Spear signed
"Kickers Travis Coons and Carey Spear to the reserve/futures list, the team announced Tuesday. Coons was an undrafted rookie free agent in 2014 out of Washington, who spent training camp with Tennessee. Spear was an undrafted rookie free agent in 2014 out of Vanderbilt, who spent training camp with Philadelphia. A native of Mayfield Village, he graduated from Mayfield High School." - Fox Sports

December 23, 2014 - long snapper Charley Hughlett signed
The Browns signed much-traveled long snapper Charley Hughlett off the Kansas City Chiefs practice squad.

December 13, 2014 - kicker Garrett Hartley signed, Billy Cundiff waived
"The Cleveland Browns made a swap at kicker after all. The team announced Saturday it waived kicker Billy Cundiff and signed Garrett Hartley. Cundiff missed Friday's practice with a knee injury, just days after he staved off competitors to keep his job.... Hartley appeared in 57 games with the New Orleans Saints from 2008-20013 and converted 82 of 101 field goal attempts." - NFL

November 23, 2014 - Billy Cundiff kicks four field goals, including game winner over Falcons
"Billy Cundiff might have been remembered Sunday for the 60-yard field goal attempt that barely crossed the goal line, instead of the crossbar, at the end of the first half. But the life of a kicker is as fickle as a lakefront breeze, even when a game is played in a big barn like the Georgia Dome. Cundiff will be remembered instead for his fourth field goal in Atlanta, the 37-yarder that beat the Falcons, 26-24, as time expired. 'When I looked up, I knew the ball was going through the uprights,'' Cundiff said to reporters. 'It's fun. It's tough to describe. It's the kind of stuff you hold onto. It's the stuff that gets you through those times when people might question your ability.' Cundiff said he didn't have any regrets about the 60-yard attempt, which Devin Hester caught in the end zone and nearly returned for a touchdown. 'Everything has to be perfect. It didn't work out. I'm glad we tried,' he said. Cundiff has 10 career game-winning field goals in his nine-year career, and two this season. His 29-yarder beat the Saints on Sept. 14." - The Plain Dealer

October 7, 2014 - long snapper Charley Hughlett released
"Satisfied with Christian Yount's redemption, the Browns have released fellow long snapper Charley Hughlett from their practice squad.... Coming off their Week 4 bye, the Browns stuck with Yount. Coach Mike Pettine said Yount had one of his best games Sunday in the Browns' 29-28 win over the Tennessee Titans. The Browns converted three extra points and field goals of 38 and 42 yards without any issues. 'Christian did a good job today bouncing back,' Pettine said after the game. 'We brought in the other long snapper on the practice squad, and [Yount] basically won the job back. He had a solid week of practice, and it showed in the game. We talked about the strength and the character of the men in our [locker] room, and that's another example of it'." - Akron Beacon Journal

September 30, 2014 - long snapper Charley Hughlett signed to practice squad
"Christian Yount remains on the active roster. 'I love this coaching staff -- [special teams coordinator Chris] Tabor and [coach Mike] Pettine, all those guys," Yount said Tuesday after practice. "I love being a Brown and being on this team. I'm happy to be here'.... The Browns tried out Hughlett and Kevin McDermott last week, according to NationalFootballPost.com. Hughlett's workout was Thursday, agent Brett Tessler said via Twitter. Hughlett has never appeared in an NFL regular-season game. He spent the preseason with the Jacksonville Jaguars, and Tessler tweeted that his client 'has had numerous workouts since the start of this season.' Yount went home and enjoyed time with family during the Browns' recent bye-week break. He considers himself recharged. 'I'm ready to work and correct the mistakes we've had and get going on Tennessee,' Yount said." - Akron Beacon Journal

September 24, 2014 - long snapper update
"The Browns plan to try out some long snappers during the break, coach Mike Pettine said, but that doesn't mean necessarily will release embattled Christian Yount. Special teams coach Chris Tabor has challenged Yount to elevate his play. He's had at least one shaky snap in each game. 'I can't put a percentage on this point whether or not we would make a move,' Pettine said. 'I would say it's probably leaning more towards no'." - Cleveland.com

September 22, 2014 - long snapper Christian Yount
"Christian Yount's struggles, and possibly his job, will be a topic of conversation with the Cleveland Browns, coach Mike Pettine said Monday -- one day after a low snap contributed to a blocked field goal in a two-point loss to the Baltimore Ravens. 'That’s something we’ll look to address,' Pettine said. 'I don’t know if it calls for a change, but it will be discussed.' Pettine said a low snap was one factor in Billy Cundiff’s 36-yard kick being blocked. Yount had a high snap in Pittsburgh, and another high one against New Orleans that slipped through holder Spencer Lanning’s fingers. That missed extra point came close to being the difference against the Saints." - ESPN

September 21, 2014 - winds of change
"The franchise completed the first of two phases of a $120 million renovation project. As part of those renovations, the Browns had thousands of seats removed from the upper bowl of the stadium in order to make room for video boards that were more than three times the size of the original boards installed in 1999. Those renovations have come with changes in kicking conditions, according to veteran kicker Billy Cundiff. 'The wind's swirling a lot more than it did before,' Cundiff said. 'The reputation I always felt Cleveland had was, sometimes, the wind is tough to gauge, depending on where it's coming from, but it was always really strong. Right now, I think we're just trying to figure out where the wind is coming from. I know Phil (Dawson) had a flag put in the end zone to the right of our bench. It was kind of like 'The Dawson flag.' That was the flag that was actually going to tell you where the wind was blowing. That flag doesn't work anymore. Right now, we're looking at anything we can within the stadium to try to give us a bead on what's going on, Right now, we're still kind of guessing, so it's a work in progress'." - WKYC

September 14, 2014 - Billy Cundiff kicks game winner over Saints
Billy Cundiff doesn't know. So don't bother asking him for insight on what, exactly, happened when he lined up for the extra-point attempt in the second quarter. 'I'm one of the majority of the kickers that don't watch the snap,' he said. 'If I could tell you what went wrong then I'm looking at the wrong thing.' What happened is that the snap from long snapper Christian Young somehow ended up skidding through the hands of the holder, punter Spencer Lanning. 'I look down at Spencer's hand, and when I went to take my right step, the ball wasn't there,' Cundiff said. 'When I took my left step, it was still not there, so we aborted the kick.' Lanning's attempt to pick up the ball and run it in the end zone wasn't successful. When the New Orleans Saints equaled the Browns' touchdowns, Cleveland's failed PAT became more and more pivotal. With 12:15 remaining, the Saints had taken a 24-23 lead Рwith only the missed point-after attempt giving them the edge. But Cundiff, Lanning and Yount became the heroes, in the end, when Cundiff's 29-yard field goal 9with six seconds remaining] meant the difference in the 26-24 victory. 'It doesn't matter what happens in the game,' Cundiff said. 'In the NFL, there's so many clich̩s that you can throw out in the situation. But the most important thing was Christian believed in himself. Spencer did his job. I did my job. For all the stuff the offense did, we made sure that we gave the fans exactly what they needed Рand that's a win'." - Plain Dealer

July 28, 2014 - kicker/punter Jake Rogers waived
"Rogers, 27, signed with the Browns in June. He was waived with an injury. By waiving Rogers, the Browns have just one punter (Spencer Lanning) and one kicker (Billy Cundiff)." - NBC 

July 12, 2014 - punter Spencer Lanning at home
"There were times when Spencer Lanning wondered if his dream of playing in the National Football League would materialize. After a few years of rejection, it appears for the former South Carolina punter and placekicker has found a home with the Cleveland Browns. 'It’s been a journey,' said Lanning, who was at Christ Church High School hosting a special teams camp with former Clemson placekicker Chandler Catanzaro. 'I’m a firm believer in everything happens for a reason. Call it a cliché or whatever. I bounced around a couple different places. They were all there to teach me a lesson and mold me to create the punter and person you see today. I’m very thankful for the misfortune, as well as the fortune. I feel the struggle has shaped me more than the success and I’m very grateful for that. At the end of the day, it has made me a better football player. I’m very happy to call Cleveland home'.” - Greenville Online

June, 9, 2014 - kicker/punter Jake Rogers signed
"Rogers is 6-2, 220 pounds and officially in his first NFL season out of Cincinnati. Originally signed by New Orleans as an undrafted free agent in 2011, Rogers has spent time with the Saints, Buccaneers, Cowboys, Giants and Redskins, but has not appeared in a game. He appeared in four preseason games with Tampa Bay in 2011 and converted all three field-goal attempts and five PATs. He also booted six punts for 250 yards for a 41.7-yard average. Rogers finished as Cincinnati’s all-time leader in scoring with 339 points. He connected on 51 of 75 field-goal attempts and set a school record with 63 extra points in 2009. A native of Warsaw, Ind., Rogers attended Warsaw Community High School, where he was a standout soccer player who also set school records in PATs, field goals and longest field goal during his only season playing football." - Akron Beacon Journal

March 6, 2014 - kicker Billy Cundiff re-signed
"The Browns have struck a deal to re-sign kicker Billy Cundiff, the team confirmed this afternoon. Cundiff will sign a one-year contract worth $1.02 million, ESPN’s Adam Schefter first reported today. Cundiff was scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent when the market opens at 4 p.m. Tuesday, but the Browns have secured his services for another season.... Last season, Cundiff made 21-of-26 field goals (80.8 percent) with one blocked. He was 2-of-4 on attempts of 50 yards or longer. Cundiff missed his lone game-winning attempt, a 58-yard try Dec. 8 on the road against the New England Patriots. He made all 32 extra-point kicks. Cundiff had a team-record 42 touchbacks on 62 kickoffs, not including onside attempts. His 67.7 touchback percentage ranked fourth in the NFL." - Akron Beacon Journal

January 27, 2014 - special teams coordinator Chris Tabor retained
"The Browns think so highly of Tabor they denied interview requests from other NFL teams for a second straight year. His job wasn’t secure, however, until new head coach Mike Pettine agreed to keep him. It didn’t hurt that the former Buffalo defensive coordinator saw Tabor’s special teams dismantle the Bills in a 37-24 victory on Oct. 5. Punt returner Travis Benjamin set a franchise record with 179 yards in returns that night. Both Benjamin and punter Spencer Lanning captured AFC Special Teams Player of the Week honors in what was an up-and-down season for the specialists" - Cleveland.com 

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