the study of the kicking components within sports

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Draft Preview: Paul Layton

Among the punters eligible for this year's NFL draft, or signing as an undrafted free agent thereafter, is Temple's Paul Layton. He ranks in the top ten in some of the various draft rankings.

Excerpts from Layton's profile page on the Owls' website:

2013 Senior Season
  • Transfer student from the University at Albany … enrolled at Temple in January 2013
  • Week 8 American Athletic Conference Special teams player of the Week: helped Temple win the field position battle that played a key part in the Owls' 33-14 win against Army. He averaged 45.3 yards on seven punts, resulting in an average starting field position of the 18-yard line for Army on the ensuing drives. 
2012 Junior Season (Albany)
  • first-team All-Northeast Conference honoree
  • averaged a league-best 40.4 yards per punt, including a program record 82-yarder vs. Wagner (11/3)
  • punted 46 times with 11 sailing 50-yards or longer
  • dropped 15 within the 20-yard line. 
2011 Sophomore Season (Albany)
  • first-team All-Northeast Conference honoree
  • ECAC Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) Special Team All-Star
  • booted 17 kicks of 50 or more yards.
2010 Freshman Season (Albany)
  • ranked 31st among the national leaders and third in the Northeast Conference
  • placed 14 punts inside the 20-yard line, including seven for touchbacks
  • booted 50-plus yard punts 12 times
  • tied 13th-longest punt in school history with 69-yarder in season finale against Monmouth
High School
  • Four-year letterwinner for coach Matt Shell at Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake HS
  • 2008 Class A first-team All-State selection by New York State Sportswriters Association as a kicker ... made 68 of 69 PATs and three field goals ... third on all-time Section II kicking list with 77 points ... averaged 42 yards per punt ... all-time leader in Section II history with 172 career kicking points
  • led high school to state championship game as a quarterback ... passed for 1,302 yards and 14 touchdowns ... rushed for 1,186 yards and 20 TDs
  • consensus All-Area punter as a junior, when he averaged 41 yards per attempt
  • four varsity awards as basketball guard
  • two-time team captain


College Stats:
2013: 61 punts, 42.8 yard average, long of 67 yards
2012: 45 punts, 41.0 yard average, long of 82 yards
2011: 50 punts, 42.3 yard average, long of 70 yards
2010: 62 punts, 40.1 yard average, long of 69 yards

Back in February, Layton looked ahead to a possible pro career:
“[Sit-down interviews] definitely showed that they have some interest in me, but it’s still early in the process. I think over the next few months I’ll get a little more knowledge of who’s really interested. I’ve kind of been trying to put everything in the works for many years now, and it’s starting to take shape but I know there’s a lot more to go....

The guys at the NFL level are very consistent, there’s a huge jump from college to the NFL in terms of being consistent, that’s the biggest thing. You have to perfect your technique, there’s a ton of doing the same motion over and over, you have to be able to do the same thing every time. I’m still working on consistency because you can never really be too good at that....

To have at least some shot at it is pretty thrilling, but I’ve talked to my agent a little more and it seems like the best thing for me is to go undrafted, because you wouldn’t have to be stuck with whatever team takes you in the sixth or seventh round,” he said. “You go undrafted, you may have several offers from teams to pick you up as a free agent so you can sort out where would be the best spot for you....

I’ll definitely keep training for the next two or three years to really give it a shot, I’m not going to quit easily in this thing because it’s what I’ve wanted for so long,” he said. “I’ll keep after it and hope for the best, and really all I ask for is a shot to play somewhere and compete.” 

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