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Monday, August 31, 2015

Dallas Cowboys Kicker, Punter & Snapper News

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August 31, 2015 - punter Tom Hornsey and long snapper Casey Kreiter released

April 21, 2015 - punter Chris Jones signs free agent tender
"Jones, who has played for the Cowboys since 2011, posted a net average of 39.8 yards per punt that was 14th-best in the NFL last season. In February, the club signed Tom Hornsey to compete with him." - Dallas Morning News

March 16, 2015 - long snapper Casey Kreiter re-signed
"The Cowboys also added long snapper Casey Kreiter, who went to training camp with Dallas last year before being released." - Star-Telegram

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February 19, 2015 - punter Tom Hornsey re-signed
"Hornsey spent just a couple of weeks with the Cowboys last summer, playing in two preseason games against the Ravens and Dolphins. The Aussie punter, who played collegiately at Memphis, joined the team in training camp on Aug. 12, the day after the club released rookie punter Cody Mandell. Hornsey never had a legitimate shot to compete with punter Chris Jones, who just finished his third season with the Cowboys. But Jones is a restricted free agent this spring and it’s uncertain if the Cowboys will give him a qualifying tender of around $1.5 million for 2015. Last August, in his two games with the Cowboys, Hornsey had five punts for an average of 50.2 yards, including a long of 63 yards. Two of his punts were downed inside the 20. Hornsey’s net average of 39.8 yards in the game, was the exact season-long average of Jones. In 2014, Jones had 57 punts for a 45.4 yard average." - Cowboys

January 16, 2015 - long snapper L.P. Ladouceur added to Pro Bowl roster
"The 10-year veteran will make his first trip to the Pro Bowl. He was added as a “need” player, selected by Ravens head coach John Harbaugh. Ladouceur will play for the Baltimore-coached squad. The third-longest tenured player on the Cowboys’ roster, Ladouceur signed with the Cowboys early in the 2005 regular-season when then-head coach Bill Parcells needed to make a change with his long snapper. With the Cowboys already staying the entire week in the Bay Area between road games with the 49ers and Raiders, they called upon the former Cal-Berkley product for a workout. Ladouceur not only was impressive in his brief workout, but he hasn’t had an errant snap in his 10-year career. And now, he will be rewarded." - Cowboys

January 11, 2015 - kicker Dan Bailey gets tipped at Green Bay
Bailey’s 50-yard field goal attempt in the second quarter was tipped, preventing the Cowboys from taking a 17-7 lead. It was the third try by Bailey this season that was either blocked or deflected. And out of the three field goals he attempted in the playoffs, only one split the uprights. Long before he that miscue, Bailey knew it was going to be a challenge to kick accurately on Sunday. 'The field wasn’t ideal all day for anybody, but I think everybody did a pretty good job of getting the right footwear and stuff,' he said." - Dallas Morning News

November 2, 2014 - kicker Dan Bailey gets blocked
"Dan Bailey had not had a field goal blocked since 2011 on a 47-yard attempt that Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul got it. It was the only block of his career before Sunday. But the Cowboys kicker had no chance on his second field-goal attempt Sunday.... Cardinals cornerback Justin Bethel was untouched on his way to blocking a 35-yard attempt on the final play of the first half. It was only the third miss Bailey ever has had from under 40 yards. He missed a 21-yarder in 2011 and missed a 35-yarder last season. 'That’s why we practice,' Bailey said. 'That’s why we work on having a fast operation times and being efficient and protecting well. …Obviously, there was a breakdown somewhere. We will just have to look at it'." - Star-Telegram

October 12, 2014 - kicker Dan Bailey is officially accurate
"Dan Bailey became the most accurate kicker in NFL history on Sunday. Bailey converted all three of his field goal attempts against the Seahawks, including a career-long 56-yarder to tie the score, 20-20, late in the third quarter. His other kicks came from 42 and 31 yards, respectively. Bailey said his record kick wasn’t his prettiest attempt but knew it was good as soon as it left his foot. 'I don’t want to speculate whether or not we would’ve kicked that in the first quarter, but who knows,' Bailey said. 'At the time, we needed three points, and [Jason Garrett] decided to make the call. There’s not too much discussion.' Bailey has now converted 91.07 percent of his kicks [102 of 112]." - Dallas Morning News 

October 5, 2014 - Dan Bailey kicks game winner over Texans
"Bailey saw his franchise record streak of 31 field goals come to an end Sunday afternoon at home against the Texans. Bailey was unable to convert a 53-yard field goal as time expired in the fourth quarter, but converted a 49-yard field goal to win the game in overtime. He converted 2 of 3 field goal attempts and added two extra points in a 20-17 victory." - CBS

September 21, 2014 - kicker Dan Bailey sets record
"The Cowboys kicker is perfect this season and made his 27th and 28th straight field goals Sunday against the Rams, the second of which set the team record for most consecutive field goals made. 'It’s one of those things where it’ll probably mean a little later in my career or when my career’s over, because right now, especially with a game like today, all you can do is just be happy you won,' Bailey said. 'But yeah, obviously any time you can string some kicks together, some successful kicks together, it’s always a positive. It’s always a little bit of a confidence builder for you.' Bailey, who’s 7-for-7 this year, tied Chris Boniol’s team record with his 27th kick on a 29-yard attempt at the end of the first half.... Bailey’s second kick, a 40-yard try in the third quarter, cut the Cowboys’ deficit to just one point and set the record. As that kick proved, his perfect mark this season isn’t a result of kicking chip shots. Five of Bailey’s seven field goals this season have been at least 40 yards out." - Cowboys

September 16, 2014 - kicker Dan Bailey on verge of record
"Bailey has connected on 26 consecutive field goal attempts and just needs one more to match Chris Boniol’s record of 27 straight, set in 1996. If he hits his first two field goal attempts in the dome against the St. Louis Rams on Sunday, he will hold the Dallas Cowboys’ record. Since joining the Cowboys in 2011, Bailey has connected on 91.3 percent of his field goal opportunities and has only missed four tries since the start of the 2012 season." - AXS

September 14, 2014 - Dan Bailey hits four field goals over Titans
Dan Bailey made four lengthy  field goals (48, 44, 51 & 48 yards) in the Cowboys 26-10 win over the Tennessee Titans.

August 26, 2014 - punter Tom Hornsey, long snapper Kasey Kreiter waived
- Cowboys

August 11, 2014 - punter Tom Hornsey to sign
"The Dallas Cowboys will sign punter Tom Hornsey to take the place of Cody Mandell, who was waived over the weekend, according to sources. Hornsey was the Ray Guy Award winner last season at Memphis and averaged 43.1 yards per punt for his career. He had 75 punts of 50 yards or more and 13 of more than 60 yards, including a career-long 79-yarder. Hornsey took part in the New York Jets' rookie minicamp in the spring. He grew up in Australia and played Aussie Rules Football." - ESPN

August 9, 2014 - punter Cody Mandell released
"The Cowboys also released rookie punter Cody Mandell on Saturday. Mandell averaged 43.7 yards per punt on three attempts against the Chargers. He also handled some kickoff duty. Garrett said the plan is to add a kicker who can help spell Dan Bailey during the preseason." - Cowboys

August 4, 2014 - camp kicking
"Dan Bailey hasn’t been kicking every day during training camp. He’s the only kicker on the Dallas Cowboys roster, so special teams coach Rich Bisaccia has limited his workload. 'It’s been good,' Bailey said. 'The schedule has been great, so I feel like I’m fresh. The days that we do kick, they’ve been going well. It’s a little windy but that’s how it is every year when we come out here. If you can battle through that, I’ve learned over the past couple years you can get back to Dallas and it kind of benefits you, so you can’t get too discouraged if it’s too windy out here. It’s been good. I’ve been feeling good'.... On days when he’s not kicking, Bailey will still line up for field goals but stop before completing his motion. 'I’ll kick whenever,' Bailey said. 'I enjoy doing it, but you also have to be conscious of your body. Just like quarterbacks, you’re not going to throw 60-yard throws every time. It’s kind of the same principal. You got to make sure you count your reps so you’re not over-stressing your body'.” - Dallas Morning News

July 7, 2014 - punter Cody Mandell
"Mandell created a buzz on the final day of minicamp when he hit the center-hung video board inside AT&T Stadium three times. However, coach Jason Garrett said the board was lower than its usual 90 feet. It had been lowered 12 days earlier for a George Strait concert. 'He’s your stereotypical specialist,' said rookie deep snapper Casey Kreiter, who roomed with Mandell briefly when they both arrived in Dallas. 'He does his work. He does his job, and he does it consistently.' Even Chris Jones offered a positive early review of Mandell, who wears a size 10 1/2 shoe on his right foot for contact and a 12 on his left foot. 'He’s showing a lot of good things,' Jones said. 'He does what he’s asked, all that kind of stuff. I think he’s the right kind of player'.” - Star-Telegram
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June 2, 2014 - kicker Dan Bailey talk goals & snapper
"Even with his continued success, Bailey, a former standout at Oklahoma State who came to Dallas as an undrafted free agent in 2011, is setting the bar even higher for himself in 2014, his fourth season in the NFL. '(My goals this year are to) really just perfect everything even more. I thought last year I was really trying to improve my kickoffs,' Bailey said. 'I thought I did that to an extent. So really it's kind of just adding more clubs to your bag so to speak, just really fine tuning all the little aspects, the day-to-day stuff, even on the practice field, just being a better pro and just taking care of business and making sure you're ready to go on Sundays'.... One of his fellow special teamers is longtime Dallas long snapper L.P. Ladouceur, who is heading into his 10th season. Ladouceur and Bailey have a nice kinship, not just because of the fact they work together so closely but also because they are both great examples of undrafted free agents who have found success in the league. 'He takes care of business and you can always count on him to get his job done. If you can play 10 years in the league at any position, I think that's saying a lot not only about you as an athlete but as a professional, and it says a lot about your character and that you can be counted on in those situations,' Bailey said. 'I'm very fortunate to have him on my side. It makes my job a lot easier for sure'." - Fox Sports

May 27, 2014 - punter competition
"The Cowboys have created some competition for the [punting] job.Undrafted Free Agent signee Cody Mandell was the top ranked punter coming into the 2014 draft.  Hailing from the University of Alabama, Mandell was a four-year starter despite being a walk-on.   In his last season with the Roll Tide, he averaged an excellent 47.1 yards per kick, though it should be noted that the high-powered ‘Baja offense only needed 39 punts throughout the season.  Still, it’s clear that Cody Mandell has a powerful leg. In March, the Cowboys re-signed their 2013 kicker Chris Jones, who in 2012 replaced former pro-bowler Matt McBriar.  Jones, also an undrafted free agent (out of DII Carson-Newman College), had a decent season for Dallas in 2013, but left more to be desired in some areas.  He averaged 45 yards a punt, which puts him right around the league average.  His best statistic is 30 punts IN20 (inside the twenty yard line), though that could be a product of where he was kicking from as much as anything else." - Sport DFW

May 10, 2014 - punter Cody Mandell & long snapper Casey Kreiter signed
Following the Draft, the Cowboys signed undrafted free agents, including punter Cody Mandell (Alabama) and long snapper Casey Kreiter (Iowa).

March 10, 2014 - punter Chris Jones signs tender
"Jones signed an exclusive rights tender after finishing with a net average of 39 yards in his first full season in 2013. He played in two games in 2011 and four more the following season before a knee injury ended his year. Jones had a gross average of 45 yards on 77 punts last season, with 30 downed inside the 20." - USA Today

January 23, 2014 - kicker Dan Bailey signed thru 2020
"The Cowboys officially signed Bailey through the 2020 season, giving the kicker a six-year contract extension. Bailey was set to become a restricted free agent this year but the Cowboys bypassed all of that, giving him a deal that will pay Bailey a little more than $3.3 million per season. This deal makes Bailey the fifth-highest paid kicker in the NFL. But the length of the contract will likely help the Cowboys keep his salary cap figure down for a few years, allowing them to have some wiggle room for other players." - Dallas Cowboys

January 22, 2014 - team negotiating with kicker Dan Bailey
"The Cowboys are in “pretty serious talks” with restricted free agent kicker Dan Bailey on a long-term contract extension, club executive vice president Stephen Jones said Wednesday. 'Optimistic about that,' Jones added from Senior Bowl practices. Bailey missed only two field goals in each of the last two seasons. He’s 89-for-98 on field goal attempts in his three-year career with the Cowboys. Bailey was 28-for-30 on field goal attempts last season and finished the season making converting 21 consecutive attempts." - Dallas Morning News

January 8, 2014 - kicking coach Chris Boniol departs
"Chris Boniol and the Dallas Cowboys have 'mutually agreed' to part ways, the special-teams assistant coach tells me today. 'Jerry Jones, Stephen Jones and Jason Garrett all made great cases on behalf of me staying, and they’ve all been tremendous to work with,' Boniol says. 'But we’ve mutually agreed to move on, with me having some of the best memories and best accomplishments of my life being part of the Cowboys.' Boniol retired as a player in 1999 as the first player in Dallas history to record three straight 100-point seasons and was a member of the Super Bowl XXX champs. After working in private business and as a teacher and coach in North Texas, he rejoined the club in 2010. Last year he signed on for a one-year contract to work under new special-teams coordinator Rich Bisaccia." - CBS DFW

San Francisco 49ers Kicker, Punter & Snapper News

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August 31, 2015 - kicker Corey Acosta released
"Rookie kicker Corey Acosta, who made all four of his field-goal attempts in the preseason, was cut today by the 49ers, he announced on his Twitter account. 'Well it was a fun ride and amazing experience, but my time with the 49ers has come to an end. Looking forward to wherever may be next,' he wrote. Acosta, 24, went undrafted out of Southern Mississippi where last year he went 19-25 on field-goal tries, including 2-3 from 50 yards or more. He hit a 50-yard attempt Saturday in Denver." - Sacramento Bee

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May 2, 2015 - punter Bradley Pinion drafted
The 49ers selected Clemson punter Bradley Pinion with the 29th pick of the 5th round.

March 6, 2015 - long snapper Kyle Nelson re-signed
The 49ers reached a new deal with long-snapper/tight end Kyle Nelson on Friday, according to a national report.... Nelson, 28, was inked to a four-year contract extension and figures to be the team's primary long-snapper in 2015. He is currently the only long-snapper on the roster and appeared in all 16 games this past season. Nelson also provides emergency depth at tight end." - CSN

November 9, 2014 - Phil Dawson kicks game tying and game winning field goals over Saints
"The 49ers pulled out a 27-24 overtime win over the Saints on Sunday thanks to outside linebacker Ahmad Brooks, who sacked quarterback Drew Brees and forced a fumble rookie linebacker Chris Borland recovered. The turnover set up Phil Dawson’s game-winning 35-yard field goal on the next play with 5:18 left.... Trailing 24-21, the 49ers sent the game to overtime thanks to a huge play from quarterback Colin Kaepernick with less than two minutes left. On 4th-and-10 from the 49ers’ 20-yard line, Kaepernick rolled right, scanned the field for several seconds, stopped, planted and uncorked a 51-yard pass to Michael Crabtree, who had snuck behind the secondary. After three straight incompletions, the 49ers tied the game 24-24 on Phil Dawson’s 45-yard field goal with 44 seconds left." - SF Gate

October 19, 2014 - Phil Dawson kicks 350th career field goal
"Phil Dawson became the 17th player in NFL history to make 350 field goals, doing so on a 22-yard effort in the second quarter. Dawson missed a 51-yard field-goal attempt wide left in the first quarter, ending a streak of 10 consecutive successful kicks. His other two missed field goals this season also came on the road, at Dallas and Arizona." - Mercury News

October 8, 2014 - kicker Phil Dawson wins weekly conference honors
"Phil Dawson has won his third NFC Special Teams Player of the Week award since joining the 49ers a year ago, and that three-peat is a franchise record by a kicker. Dawson made all five of his field-goal attempts in Sunday’s win over the Chiefs." - Mercury News 

October 5, 2014 - Phil Dawson hits five field goals in win over Chiefs
"Dawson, 39, supplied five more makes to his career field goal total of 348. Tack on an extra point and Dawson supplied 16 of San Francisco's 22 points in a five-point victory over the visiting Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday. Dawson came up huge for the 49ers in a come-from-behind victory. He made kicks from 31, 55, 52, 27 and 30 yards out. 'No expiration date on Phil Dawson,' Jim Harbaugh said after the 49ers improved to 3-2 on the year. 'Let’s put that down. There is no expiration date on Mr. Phil Dawson'.... San Francisco scored one touchdown on its four red-zone possessions on the day, but Dawson's comfort in his new stadium made him a reliable weapon against Kansas City. 'I joked with you guys earlier that it only took me about 10 years to get comfortable in Cleveland,' Dawson, the former Browns Pro Bowler said. 'I still have a lot of work to do. Today was a good day. My existence is one kick at a time. Even if you have good results, you have to get ready for the next one'." - 49ers

September 28, 2014 - Phil Dawson hits four field goals in win over Eagles
"Dawson's four field goals were enough to more than offset two special teams gaffes by the 49ers in a 26-21 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles at Levi's Stadium on Sunday.... Dawson's first field goal gave the 49ers their first points. He later cut the Eagles lead to 21-13, turned a deficit into a 23-21 lead and stretched the lead to five midway through the fourth quarter. His fourth field goal turned out to be especially huge, given the Eagles second-to-last drive reached the 49ers 1-yard line. They were forced to go for a touchdown rather than a field goal but failed on two passes from the 1. 'It feels great to contribute,' Dawson said. 'The nature of special teams, though, is whether you're having a great day or the worst day ever, it's one shot at a time. And you never know when that's going to come'." - San Jose Mercury News 

August 30, 2014 - long snapper Kevin McDermott released, Kyle Nelson remains
"But a big surprise on cut-down day was the team’s decision to waive second-year long-snapper Kevin McDermott, the man who beat out Brian Jennings for the job a year ago. McDermott performed flawlessly for the 49ers as a rookie, but the 49ers opted to go with Kyle Nelson due to his athleticism to run down the field to make tackles, too. Nelson gives the 49ers added value as a tight end. He caught six passes for 21 yards in the exhibition season, including two touchdowns in the 49ers’ 40-13 victory over the Houston Texans on Thursday in the finale." - CSN Bay Area

August 24, 2014 - breaking in the sod
"The surface at Levi’s Stadium was dotted with divots by the end of the game, but overall footing didn’t appear to be a significant issue. That, of course, wasn’t the case Wednesday when the 49ers ended practice at the stadium early because the sod was coming up in large chunks. 'I’m just amazed it was that playable given that it was put in (Friday),” placekicker Phil Dawson said.... Not that everything went smoothly. Dawson came up limping late in the second quarter when his plant foot slipped on an extra-point attempt. Dawson, who stayed in the game and made a 28-yard field goal in the fourth quarter, clearly wasn’t eager to assign blame to the new field for his shaky footing. 'They weren’t all perfectly clean,' said Dawson, a 15-year veteran. 'But when you’re 39 everything hurts anyway.' Asked if he limped off after his extra point because of poor footing, he smiled: 'I think I’m fine'.” - SF Gate

August 21, 2014 - sod replacement
"The San Francisco 49ers were working to re-sod the field at new Levi's Stadium on Thursday, a day after a public workout was cut short and moved to the regular practice fields because players were slipping....  'It's a beautiful field for a first-year field,' veteran placekicker Phil Dawson said this week. 'Those guys are working their brains out to get that thing ready.' Dawson missed wide right on first-half field goal attempts from 55 and 44 yards in Sunday's 34-0 loss to the Denver Broncos. He said there are always adjustments with new grass. The field looked dry in places and chunks of sod could be seen missing in places where it apparently didn't root properly. 'We're all kind of in foreign territory here and learning as we go,' Dawson said. 'There were a lot of new experiences, not just wind but the footing on the field. It's the first time the big boys have been out there and trudging around and seeing how the field held up. There's a whole lot going on all at once. ... If your technique requires a six-inch step and your six-inch step goes in a divot or something like that, it can affect things. That's not unique to fields we play on. I have pretty good experience playing on fields that are less than ideal, so I'll just have to draw on those experiences'." - Yahoo

August 17, 2014 - kicker Phil Dawson misses twice in new venue
Kicker Phil Dawson has been fretting about the wind and weather at the 49ers' new stadium since he arrived last season. His performance Sunday won't allow him him sleep any easier. Going into a breeze in the first quarter, Dawson was short and wide right from 55 yards. He also missed – wide right – with the wind at his back from 44 yards. One thing to keep in mind: He also missed a 44-yarder in his first game at Candlestick Park in last year's preseason home opener. He went on to hit 32 of 36 attempts in the regular season, including a franchise record 27 straight." - Sacramento Bee
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August 8, 2014 - Punter Colton Schmidt
"Schmidt is not going to make the team as long as Andy Lee is healthy. But he put some very good game film together by pinning two punts just outside the Ravens goal line (though one was called back on a penalty)." - Sacramento Bee
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August 4, 2014 - kicker Phil Dawson discusses kicking in new stadium 
"Kicker Phil Dawson and punter Andy Lee started getting a feel for the winds and nuances of Levi's Stadium long before Monday, so this was just another opportunity to get better acquainted. 'There's a whole lot of learning that needs to go on,' Dawson said. 'Those two preseason games are going to be huge in terms of gathering information and trying to come up with a plan.' The learning curve might take all season, Dawson said. He spent his first 14 NFL seasons dealing with the wind, snow and whatever else Mother Nature threw his way in Cleveland. He signed with the 49ers last offseason and made a seamless transition kicking at Candlestick Park. The early signs are that he's going to have his hands full in the new stadium, too. 'Candlestick swirled a lot, and I'm afraid this one is awfully similar,' Dawson said. 'You'll be going along and think you kind of got it all figured out, and then something will change. The wind comes and goes'." - Contra Cost Times 

August 2, 2014 - coach Harbaugh discusses kicking in new stadium
"What kind of feedback have you gotten from K Phil Dawson and P Andy Lee about kicking in here so far because they've been every other day in camp, right? Coming over here and kicking in the stadium. 'Yeah. Talked to Phil about it and he's encouraged. He feels like it's going to be a great place to kick. It's part of the process. We've got to get used to it. We've got to get used to the new stadium, new wind, new grass, everything. We can mark our territory soon as we possibly can. Get used to it as much as we possibly can before we play our first game there.'

Do you have any indications how that wind is going to play? You've been on that practice field for three years, but do you have an idea how it's going to play in there as far as for the kickers, for the quarterbacks? 'They're talking about it, they're looking, they're trying to get keys. Where the flags blow, getting the reference point, then find out what it's doing on the field. Is it exactly the same as what the flag is? Sometimes it's opposite. Sometimes it swirls. So, that's part of the process of getting used to it." - Niners Nation

July 25, 2014 - long snapper Kyle Nelson signed
"Nelson, a tight end and long snapper, was in the 49ers’ 2012 training camp and spent part of the 2013 offseason with them.... Nelson played in 11 games last season with the Redskins. He spent last year’s training camp with the Seahwawks, and the Redskins signed him Oct. 15. He’s also had stints with the Saints, Chiefs, Eagles and Chargers." - Mercury News

March 11, 2014 - kicker Phil Dawson re-signed
"Now that Phil Dawson has re-signed with the 49ers for two more seasons, he'll have to learn the nuances of kicking in their new $1.3 billion home. Levi's Stadium's wind patterns already have Dawson's attention as much as the 49ers' infamous old field, Candlestick Park. 'We'll see about the wind. I'm definitely going to try to get in there,' Dawson said Tuesday on a media conference call. 'I watched the video on the other day, and as everyone was marveling at the (installation) of automatic goal posts, I was just staring at the flags that fluctuated.'... Dawson, after 14 seasons with the Browns, proved a phenomenal pickup last spring for the 49ers. He totaled the second-most field goals in 49ers history (32), including a franchise-record 27 in a row at one point. He made walk-off field goals in the 49ers' regular-season finale at Arizona and again the following week in their wild-card playoff win at Green Bay. He made all seven of his field-goal attempts in the playoffs, and 32 of 36 in the regular season." - San Jose Mercury News

USC Trojans Kicker, Punter & Snapper News

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August 30, 2015 - JC punter Chris Tilbey added
"The Trojans will be adding a punter with the news that Chris Tilbey from City College of San Francisco will attend USC. Tilbey (6-foot-6, 235) is originally from Melbourne, Australia where he was part of the Pro Kick Australia program that has sent multiple kickers and punters to the NCAA and NFL ranks. He also played tight end last season for the CCSF Rams but will be strictly a punter for the Trojans. In 13 games last year he had 54 punts with a 39.4 average, including 19 punts inside the 20." - WeAreSC

April 11, 2015 - spring game
"Placekickers Matt Boermeester and Alex Wood both hit field goals of more than 50 yards to help the Trojan offense beat the defense, 37-23.... Boermeester hit field goals of 52 and 39 yards, while Wood had 51- and 35-yarders. Neither kicker missed a field goal." - Trojans

April 8, 2015 - kicking competition
"Matt Boermeester is in a two-horse race against redshirt junior kicker Alex Wood for the starting place kicking job and kickoff duties. The two have competed throughout spring ball and the starter will likely be named during fall camp. Sark on the kicking competition: 'They're striking the ball well. Both of them are. The operation is really key and we're fortunate to have our snapper and holder coming back. That helps new kickers coming in and allows them to focus on their job'." - Trojans

March 2, 2015 - spring specialists
"USC's punter (Kris Albarado), snapper (Zach Smith), holder (Conner Sullivan), kickoff man (Alex Wood) and primary kickoff returners (Adoree' Jackson and JuJu Smith) return from last year, but a new placekicker and punt returner must be found to replace a pair of departed record setters.... Senior Kris Albarado (60 P, 41.4 avg in 2014 with 2 BLK, plus 1 tac) returns for his third year as the Trojan punter. After being asked to be a placement punter in 2013, he let loose last season and upped his punting average by more than 4 yards to 41.4. Eleven more of his boots traveled at least 50 yards in 2014 than the previous year, although his percentage of punts inside the 20 declined by 7%. Untested walk-on redshirt freshman Reid Budrovich, who can also placekick, will back up Albarado. After handling USC's placekicking duty the past 4 seasons, Andre Heidari has graduated and leaves behind big shoes to fill. In his career, he nailed 49-of-66 field goals, including 4 that went at least 50 yards (giving him 3 of the 9 longest 3-pointers in Trojan history), and he set Pac-12 records for PATs (187) and PAT attempts (193). Last year, he was good on 9-of-11 field goals (including a pair of 50-yarders) and 49-of-50 PATs. He also kicked off in USC's first 5 games, a role he handled the previous 3 years. Battling to replace Heidari will be junior walk-on Alex Wood (12-of-12 PAT in 2014, plus 2 tac), who was perfect on all 20 of his PAT tries when he was called up to fill in briefly for an injured Heidari in 2012 and again last year (Wood, however, has not attempted a field goal), and untried left-footed sophomore Matt Boermeester, who redshirted last fall after transferring from a junior college. Wood also handled USC's kickoff chores the last half of 2014, getting touchbacks on 14 of his 48 kickoffs (another 11 pinned opponents within the 20-yard line). There also is a pair of redshirt freshmen walk-on kickers in Wyatt Schmidt and Reid Budrovich (he might also work at punter). Junior Zach Smith (2 tac in 2014) is back for his third year as USC's snapper after flawlessly filling that role on all placekicks and punts in 2014 (he handled just the placement kicks in 2013). Junior walk-on quarterback Conner Sullivan is in line to be the holder again on all placement kicks, a job he handled smoothly last season. Senior quarterback Cody Kessler will once again serve as the well-versed backup holder (he spent 2012 as USC's holder)." - Trojans

October 11, 2014 - Alex Wood handles kicking
"Kicker Andre Heidari did not suit up for the game after suffering a groin injury during Thursday’s practice. Walk-on Alex Wood replaced Heidari. Wood kicked in 2012 but did not attempt any field goals and only kicked extra points. Wood lined up for a field goal attempt in USC’s loss to Stanford, but the Trojans faked the kick and Matt Barkley threw an incomplete pass to fullback Soma Vainuku. Stanford won the game. Also making the trip was scholarship kicker Matt Boermeester, but USC does not want to use him if possible because he is red-shirting." - Los Angeles Daily News

September 6, 2014 - Andre Heidari kicks winner over Stanford, again
Andre Heidari swears he has nothing against Stanford. But there he was Saturday in Stanford Stadium, handing the Cardinal a painful loss for the second straight season with a long, late field goal. This time it was a career-long 53-yard kick for Heidari, a Stockdale graduate, and a 13-10 victory for USC. In case you had forgotten: Heidari did the same thing to Stanford last year in Los Angeles, hitting a 47-yarder in the final seconds to win 20-17. 'They're a great ball club with great players and a great coach,' Heidari said. 'I'm just glad I got the opportunity to do what I did again'." -  Bakersfield Californian

August 5, 2014 - kicker Matthew Boermeester
"New kicker Matthew Boermeester, who was a late addition from Saddleback College, made 9 of 10 field goals the first two days, including a 52-yarder tonight. Boermeester, who is on scholarship, is the son of former UCLA kicker Peter Boermeester. Andre Heidari struggled Monday but made 5 of 5 field goals tonight and also made a 52-yarder. Boermeester’s scholarship will count as part of the Class of 2015′s allotment. He is considered a 'blue shirt,' which means a non-recruited athlete can receive a scholarship a day after practice starts and it counts toward next year." - Inside USC

June 29, 2014 - kicker Wyatt Schmidt to walk-on
"Kicker Wyatt Schmidt from St. Thomas Academy in St. Paul has decided to turn down a scholarship offer from Dartmouth and other schools to play hockey, to walk on at USC to play football. He made the decision yesterday and will arrive at SC around July 29." - 247Sports

June 17, 2014 - kicker Matthew Boermeester added
"USC will add Saddleback (JUCO) kicker Matthew Boermeester for the class of 2014." - Brad Hoiseth

April 19, 2014 - spring game
"Through a complicated scoring system, the defense “won’’ the scrimmage by a score of 16-15. Kicker Andre Heidari made 4 of 5 field-goal attempts to account for the game’s only offense." - Orange County Register

April 5, 2014 - kicker Andre Heidari is kicking
"Former special teams coach John Baxter did not believe in having the kickers actually kick field goals during spring practice. But the kickers are getting limited work under Steve Sarkisian. And today, Andre Heidari made field goals of 44-and-47 yards." - Inside USC

March 4, 2014 - kicker Reid Budrovich commits
"Reid Budrovich, the standout kicker for St. John Bosco's 16-0 football team and the standout pitcher for the baseball team, said Tuesday he will attend USC in the fall and play both football and baseball. Budrovich was a reliable kicker on field goals and kickoffs. He's also expected to be the ace for the Braves this spring." - Los Angeles Times

Tennessee Titans Kicker, Punter & Snapper News

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August 30, 2015 - kicker Mike Meyer released

March 13, 2015 -  kicker Ryan Succop re-signed to 3-year deal
"The Titans have agreed to terms on a three-year deal with kicker Ryan Succop, according to sources familiar with the situation. Succop joined the Titans last season after playing previously with the Chiefs. His deal is valued at $2.4 million per year, per sources. He was 19-of-22 on field goals and a perfect 27-of-27 on extra point attempts." - The Tennessean

March 8, 2015 - long snapper Beau Brinkley re-signed to 5-year deal
The Tennessee Titans have signed long snapper Beau Brinkley to a five-year contract. It’s worth $5.75 million, according to a league source. Brinkley was scheduled to be a restricted free agent. Brinkley, 25, had a career-high 10 special-teams tackles last season. This will be his fourth year as the Titans’ long snapper." - National Football Post

March 7, 2015 - punter Brett Kern re-signed to 5-year deal
"Kern was scheduled to become a free agent on March 10. His deal is worth $15 million. Kern, who just completed his seventh NFL season, has been a valuable weapon for the Titans. In 2014, he punted a career-high 88 times for a gross average of 46.8 yards and a net average of 40.8 yards, which broke his own single-season team record. He owns the top four net punting seasons in franchise history and five of the team's top seven net punting seasons. Kern, who joined the Titans in 2009, ranks as the franchise's all-time career leader in both gross punting average (44.9 yards) and net punting average (40.0)." - The Tennessean 

September 7, 2014 - Ryan Succop kicks former team
"The Titans released longtime kicker Rob Bironas in the offseason, then cut both men competing for the job in training camp (Travis Coons and Maikon Bonani). They signed Succop, late of the Chiefs, just Monday and the new kicker got the job done in his first game with Tennessee. Succop hit both his extra points and hammered field goals of 31, 36, 46 and 47 yards to finish with a 14-point day." -

September 5, 2014 - eye on kicker Ryan Succop
"Now Succop is reunited with Steve Hoffman, who's the Titans assistant special teams coach. The Titans told Succop when he arrived he could determine just how much work he needed this week with snapper Beau Brinkley and holder Brett Kern. Hoffman said it's been smooth. Succop said Hoffman's already spotted something that's helped him. '[Thursday] we were out there working on a little kickoff stuff and he just has that eye to see, he has a slow eye is what a lot of people say,' Succop said. 'He can see things that a lot of people can't see. He was able to kind of see what was going on, say something real quick and after that I started hitting the ball real well'." - ESPN

September 1, 2014 - kicker Ryan Succop signed
"Veteran kicker Ryan Succop has agreed to a one-year deal with the Tennessee Titans who chose to go with experience rather than an undrafted rookie. Agent Joel Turner said Monday that Succop is happy with a "very good opportunity" with the Titans." - AP

August 31, 2014 - kicker Ryan Succop reportedly to sign
"The Titans have a strong interest in former Chiefs kicker Ryan Succop and indications are they could sign him as early as Monday, according to sources familiar with the situation. Succop would replace kicker Travis Coons on the roster. The Titans elected to keep Coons – and release Maikon Bonani – when they trimmed their roster to 53 over the weekend. If a deal is reached, Succop would face his old team in the regular season opener on Sunday in Kansas City. The Chiefs released him on Saturday after five seasons. Titans' officials and Succop's agents could not be reached for comment. Succop hit 22-of-28 field goals and forced 47 touchbacks in 91 kickoffs in 2013 and he is the most accurate field-goal kicker in Chiefs history (119-of-147, 81 percent)." - The Tennessean

August 30, 2014 - kicker Maikon Bonani released, Travis Coons remains
"Bonani entered the offseason as the favorite to replace veteran Rob Bironas, who was released in March. Bonani spent training camp with the Titans last year, and he enjoyed a solid offseason this year. Bonani struggled with his accuracy in training camp, however. He was 3-of-4 on field goals in preseason games, and 3 of-4 on extra points. Travis Coons, an undrafted free agent, remains on the Titans roster. He was 2-of-3 on his field goal attempts and made all three of his extra points." - The Tennessean

August 28, 2014 - final preseason game
"The Titans have alternated Maikon Bonani and Travis Coons throughout the first three preseason games in a kicking competition. In this game, it was all Bonani. He put two kickoffs to the back of the end zone for touchbacks, missed wide left on a 32-yard attempt when the snap was bad but the hold was fast and good, and hit from 29 yards." - ESPN

August 23, 2014 - third preseason game
"Maikon Bonani, who was inconsistent during training camp, connected on both of his field-goal attempts. He hit from 44 yards in the second quarter and from 51 yards in the third – banking the second attempt in off the right upright. Bonani kicked off three times, recording two touchbacks and putting his other one five yards deep in the end zone. 'It's good to see Bonani respond,' Titans coach Ken Whisenhunt said. 'He's missed a couple, so he makes the competition tougher.' Travis Coons went 1-for-2 on field goal attempts, missing from 63 yards at the end of the half and hitting from 39 in the fourth quarter. The undrafted rookie also kicked off three times, recording one touchback, putting one kick seven yards deep in the end zone and another four yards deep." - The Tennessean

August 15, 2014 - second preseason game
"Undrafted rookie Travis Coons continues to pressure Maikon Bonani in the Titans' kicking competition. Coons nailed a 50-yard field goal in the first half against the Saints on Friday after his 45-yarder was negated because of a penalty. Coach Ken Whisenhunt was impressed. 'Not only was it a 50-yard, but he had already made a 45-yarder,' Whisenhunt said. 'To have to come back and re-kick it and make it speaks a whole lot about what you are looking for in that position.' Coons made all three of his extra point attempts. Bonani was involved on kickoffs, as was Coons." - The Tennessean

August 9, 2014 - first preseason game
"Maikon Bonani misfired on an extra point attempt – from 33 yards – following Shonn Greene's touchdown run in the first quarter. On a rainy night, the snap appeared off target and the hold appeared shaky, but it was a miss nonetheless. Travis Coons made his only extra-point attempt. Bonani converted an extra point after the final touchdown. Coach Ken Whisenhunt said he wanted to give Bonani another chance after the early miss. 'It was a tough situation,' Whisenhunt said. 'They struggled, we struggled, and it got a little better at the end. But it was tough when he tried to kick that.' Bonani handled the opening kickoff, Coons the second kickoff." - The Tennessean

August 2, 2014 - kicking competition
Maikon Bonani – 3/5 – Makes from 33, 39, 47 – Misses from 43, 42
Travis Coons – 4/5 – Makes from 41, 39, 42, 47 – Miss from 49 - HobNob Nashville

August 1, 2014 - kicking competition
"In the ongoing kicking competition, Travis Coons went 3-for-3 and Maikon Bonani went 2-for-3 on Friday during Titans training camp. Coons connected from 38, 35 and 48 yards. Bonani hit from 46 and 44 yards, but pushed a 37-yard attempt wide to the right. 'I always take the blame for my misses,' Bonani said. 'So let's just say I hit the ground and the ball came off a little funky. I pushed it right.' It was the second time in three practices that Bonani had gone 2-for-3. There's little doubt he has a powerful leg, but it remains to be seen if he's accurate enough to replace Rob Bironas – the fourth-most accurate kicker in NFL history. Coach Ken Whisenhunt said he's more interested to see how the kickers fare in Saturday's practice at LP Field, in Monday's practice with the Atlanta Falcons and in next Saturday's preseason opener against the Green Bay Packers." - The Tennessean

June 21, 2014 - kicker Travis Coons passes first test
"Coons did pass at least one test – the Bernard Pollard test – when he took the practice field for the first time last week. 'Bernard Pollard makes it stressful for any kicker that is out here kicking,' Titans coach Ken Whisenhunt said. 'That's all part of it.' What exactly did Pollard say to Coons, the undrafted free agent from the University of Washington, as he lined up for his initial Titans practice attempts? 'He said something with my last name in a different sort of way,' said a smiling Coons, who didn't want to get any more specific. 'It was creative. I thought it was funny. I kind of laughed a little bit'.... There's also the importance of deep kick-offs, an area in which former kicker Rob Bironas had started to slip the last couple of seasons. 'That's an important piece of it,' Whisenhunt said. 'Field position in this game now, especially when you're kicking off from the 35, has become a big deal. So having a guy that can kick it deep gives you an advantage, and it's something that's important to us." - The Tennessean

June 12, 2014 - kicking competition begins
"Maikon Bonani’s approach is that every kick – even at this time of year – counts. 'As a kicker you want to make every kick you attempt,' he said. 'So my mindset is to never miss, whether I’m warming up, whether it’s a live team rep or whether I’m charting by myself.' The good news for him is that he has taken every kick during organized team activities (OTAs). Until now. The battle to replace Rob Bironas as the Tennessee Titans kicker begins in earnest Thursday, the final day of OTAs, with the arrival of free agent rookie Travis Coons following the completion of his academic year at the University of Washington." - Nashville Post

May 28, 2014 - kicker Maikon Bonani
"Bonani competed for the job last year as an undrafted free agent from South Florida but lost out to Bironas because of accuracy issues. 'That was the perception last year. I came in here with a really strong leg, but I lacked a little bit of accuracy. That is something that I worked on when I left here,' Bonani said Tuesday after the Titans started organized team activities at Saint Thomas Sports Park. 'As many people have seen and many of my coaches say, I have the leg strength to kick it anywhere. It just has to go in. 'My accuracy has improved dramatically, and fortunately my power is the same. I can kick off just as far, if not farther, than last year. When it comes to field goals, I’m way more accurate than I used to be'.... Titans long snapper Beau Brinkley and punter Brett Kern have been together for three seasons and have a 'nice rhythm' going. After five years with Bironas, it will take some time for Kern, who is the holder on field goals and extra points, to see what the new guy prefers. 'It’s just a matter of figuring out what Maikon likes as far as tilt and all that,' Kern said. 'We just keep working on it every day to the point where it is automatic, second nature'.” - The Leaf Chronicle

May 28, 2014 - punter/arm-wrestler Brett Kern keeps jersey number
"Former Clemson quarterback Charlie Whitehurst lost an arm wrestling match against Titans' punter Brett Kern on Tuesday for the right to wear the #6 jersey for their team. Whitehurst had worn the #6 jersey for 13 straight years. His new jersey number is #12." - Tigernet

May 19, 2014 - Head coach on the kicking competition
Kickers Maikon Bonani and Travis Coons are currently competing for the job. 'You're always going to look (at options), but you are going to give them an opportunity to compete and if you feel comfortable with them, that's the direction you can go,' Titans coach Ken Whisenhunt said. 'But I think there will be opportunities potentially for veteran guys, too, if we feel like we need that'.... 'He's been good,' Whisenhunt said of Bonani. 'The one time he kicked in the last minicamp he kicked well. It was a stiff wind and he did well'.... '(Coons) was one of the guys (special teams coach) Nate (Kaczor) and the special teams guys worked out and thought highly of,' Whisenhunt said of Coons. 'He's a young guy with a strong leg and versatile'." - The Tennessean

May 12, 2014 - kicker competition
"As the Titans look to replace Rob Bironas, they'll have last year's camp audition, Maikon Bonani, compete for the spot. It'll be a fight between Bonani and Travis Coons. Special-teams coach Nate Kaczor and assistant special-teams coach Steve Hoffman did extensive film work, and worked out several guys beyond the combine. They liked two or three guys, and Coons was one of them. " - ESPN
Kickology note: Steve Hoffman has a long history, beginning with his many years in Dallas, of selecting and developing less publicized kickers.

May 10, 2014 - kicker Travis Coons signed
"Former University of Washington kicker/punter Travis Coons informed he has signed with the Tennessee Titans as an undrafted free agent. The signing comes as no surprise given his private workout with the Titans went well and they were the team keeping in contact with him the most. The San Diego Chargers also expressed interest.... This off-season the Titans released long time kicker Rob Bironas and the team has not solidified the position by any means since his release. Coons comes into the team with an open completion and a strong relationship with the coaching staff. 'It's going to be a really good competition for the job so I'm excited. I talked with coach Nate Kaczor [special teams coach] and coach Steve Hoffman [assistant special teams coach] after I signed and he's pumped to get things going and it's going to be a good competition so be ready to work.' Next week Coons will head out to Tennessee for the Titans mini camp and then return to Washington to finish up school before flying back to Tennessee in June." - Real Dawg

April 9, 2014 - kicker Maikon Bonani a contender
"Maikon Bonani, who was on the roster for training camp last season, is the only kicker on the roster for now. As the Titans began their offseason program on Monday, coach Ken Whisenhunt said he's not worried – yet. 'I am confident that we’ll have a guy you can depend on. How comfortable am I in that? Until we miss the first kick in practice, then my comfort level will go down a little bit,' Whisenhunt said with a smile. 'But that is a part of this process. I think there will be opportunities, whether they are on this team right now, or at some point, we’ll have somebody we’re comfortable with.'... Bonani, an undrafted free agent who displayed a strong leg in camp last year, will be a contender. In 48 games for South Florida, he was 69-of-91 on field goals (75.8 percent) and 112-of-116 on extra points (96.6)." - DNJ

March 19, 2014 - kicker Rob Bironas released
"Bironas, 36, has 1,032 points, the second-highest total in Oilers/Titans franchise history behind Al Del Greco. He’s currently the fourth-ranked kicker in NFL history in terms of field-goal accuracy, having connected on 239 of 279 attempts (85.7 percent) over his nine years in Tennessee. The release of Bironas, who had one more year remaining on his contract, is a money-saver for the Titans. Bironas was scheduled to make a base salary of $2.875 million in 2014. 'We want to thank Rob for his nine years of service to the Titans,''Titans general manager Ruston Webster said in a press release. 'He has been an outstanding kicker and we appreciate him both for his contributions on the field and in our community.' The Titans will likely audition multiple kickers to replace Bironas. One possibility could be Maikon Bonani, who showed a powerful leg — though not great accuracy — in training camp last year." - The Tennessean

Carolina Panthers Kicker, Punter & Snapper News

August 30, 2015 - punter Matt Wile released

May 4, 2015 - punter Matt Wile signed
"Former Michigan kicker/punter Matt Wile signed a rookie free agent deal with the Carolina Panthers, the team announced Monday. Wile is listed on the Panthers' rookie camp roster as a punter. Wile punted 91 times at Michigan, netting a 40.2-yard average per kick. He also went 20 of 29 on field goal attempts, including a long of 52 yards." - MLive

December 14, 2014 - Graham Gano kicks four field goals in win over Bucs
"Derek Anderson and the Panthers’ offense had its fair share of success moving the chains for first downs, but had five drives stall inside the Bucs’ 40-yard line. Enter Gano. The six-year NFL veteran was 4 for 5 on field goals with a long of 49 yards late in the first quarter. His 45-yarder with 6:24 left in the game gave the Panthers their first two-score lead of the game. Gano’s only miss came from 50 early in the second quarter. 'In the end, all that matters is that you score more points than the other team,' Gano said. 'I’m glad I was able to do my part, but I’m a perfectionist at the same time, and I wish I could have that 50-yarder back. But, you move on, and you lean, and I was able to get two more after that.' Gano also booted all six of his kick-offs into the end zone for touchbacks." - Gaston Gazette

November 30, 2014 - two punts blocked and returned for scores by Vikings
"Punter Brad Nortman was asked how he saw the two Vikings' punt blocks that were returned for touchdowns develop in front of him. It was a hard question to answer. 'Honestly, I don't really see it until the very last second,' Nortman said. 'I'm just focused on catching the ball, holding it and kicking it. I don't even see them coming.' To execute a punt, Nortman trusts the protection and focuses on the ball. Unfortunately, the protection didn't hold up twice, leaving Nortman exposed. 'Both of them were individual breakdowns, very disappointing. Individuals got beat,' head coach Ron Rivera said. 'Not systematic, it has nothing to do with the protection or anything like that. Individuals got beat'." - Panthers

November 16, 2014 - kicker Graham Gano misses potential game winner, another blocked
"Gano, one of the league’s most reliable kickers, had two chances in the final 84 seconds to give Carolina a victory against the Atlanta Falcons in a game the Panthers desperately needed to rekindle a season on the verge of flaming out. Both times – first from 46 yards with 1 minute, 26 seconds remaining and then from 63 yards as time expired – Gano failed to deliver, and the Panthers were left with a 19-17 loss they nearly avoided....  'I just missed the kick,' Gano said of his 46-yard attempt that missed wide left by the approximate length of a football. 'It’s painful. I’ve got to make the kick. That’s why I’m the placekicker here. I obviously wish I could have it back, but I’ve got to put it through the uprights. It’s just a miss.' Gano refused to blame mechanics or any other factor on just his second missed field goal at Bank of America Stadium in two-plus seasons. 'I think the guys did a good job. It’s on me. I wish I could have it back,' Gano said.... Suddenly, Gano had another opportunity. The Panthers moved 39 yards in three plays, using just 21 seconds. When receiver Kelvin Benjamin lateraled to Greg Olsen, who skipped out of bounds with one second remaining, Gano and the kicking team rushed back on the field. A 63-yard field goal would have been just a yard shy of Matt Prater’s league-record kick. ‘We were like ‘This is cool.’ We were excited to get that opportunity,” long snapper J.J. Jansen said. 'I asked him before that (final) kick, ‘What’s your range?’ He said, ‘I’ll hit it from any distance.’ He hit a good ball. It just got blocked.' Atlanta’s Ra’Shede Hageman got a hand on Gano’s kick, killing it immediately. Instead of a potential game-winner, Gano’s kick fell nearly 30 yards short of the back line. Gano said he didn’t try to kick the ball lower to get more distance. 'I don’t think there’s a higher probability (of a block). I’ve been blessed with a strong leg so I didn’t have to change anything. I hit it well,' Gano said." - Charlotte Observer
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September 14, 2014 - Graham Gano kicks, recovers & has fun against Detroit 
"Kicker Graham Gano played a significant role in the Panthers’ 24-7 win over the Detroit Lions on Sunday, including one play that defied the odds. Gano notched the first fumble recovery of his six-year career midway through the fourth quarter, being in the right spot at the right time after linebacker Chase Blackburn caused Detroit’s Jeremy Ross to fumble on a kickoff return. 'You don’t expect a kicker to get a fumble recovery,' Gano said. 'But it was fun. That’s what we practice. Coach is always saying don’t be that kicker that is just barely jogging down the field, so I like to be there, and I’d like to think if they’re going to bring it out of the end zone, our guys are going to stick them pretty good. It was exciting.' Gano kicked off six times during the game and the other five were all non-returnable. Gano also kicked three field goals, connecting from 29 and 53 yards in the second quarter, and 38 yards after his fumble recovery in the fourth." - Winston-Salem Journal 

August 24, 2014 - punter Jordan Gay released
- Panthers

August 15, 2014 - kicker Graham Gano returns to practice
Apparently, kicker Graham Gano's back is feeling better. On one of the Panthers' two natural grass practice fields Thursday, while getting in work on the side with his fellow specialists, Gano drilled a 70-yard field goal with some room to spare. 'It's all in the hold, really,' Gano said, noting that he has made a 75-yarder before. 'When (punter) Brad (Nortman) gives me a good hold, that makes it easy.' Gano, who sat out the Panthers' preseason opener with a sore back, made it look easy last year when he was a consistent weapon in his first full season with Carolina. Now, after signing a four-year contract extension in the offseason, Gano is poised to pick up where he left off when the Panthers host the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday night. 'It killed me last week to be sitting on the sideline, watching the other guys, so I'm really amped up to get back out there this week,' Gano said. 'I've been getting good treatment and rehab, strengthening all the muscles in the back. I'm feeling really good and am excited about playing Sunday'." - Panthers

August 8, 2014 - punter Jordan Gay becomes first to miss long extra point
"Carolina Panthers kicker Jason Gay is the answer to the trivia question — for you super-obscure folks — of which kicker was the first to miss a 33-yard extra-point attempt in the preseason. It happened after a brilliant Kelvin Benjamin touchdown catch on the first play of the second quarter against the Buffalo Bills." - Yahoo

August 7, 2014 - kicker Graham Gano nursing sore back
"The Panthers aren't sure if kicker Graham Gano will be able to play against the Bills because of a sore back, but Jordan Gay is ready to fill in. Gay, in training camp with the Panthers for the second consecutive season, is officially listed as a punter behind Brad Nortman but also handled placekicking duties at Centre College for three seasons. 'Graham might have overdone it a couple of days ago, so he's a little bit tender,' Rivera said. 'If we have to hold him out, Gay will take all the kicks, and he'll get to punt as well'." - Panthers

May 19, 2014 - punter Jordan Gay signed
"The Panthers have also signed punter Jordan Gay, who attended training camp with Carolina as a rookie in 2013. He most recently spent time with the New York Giants, joining the team in January before being waived May 12. A three-time Southern Athletic Association Special Teams Player of the Year at Centre College, he handled punting and placekicking duties for three seasons. Gay generated a gross punting average of 42.7 yards with 31 punts inside the 20 and a long of 73 yards on 113 punts and converted 111-of-114 extra point opportunities and 31-of-49 field goal attempts." - Panthers

May 16, 2014 - rookie minicamp
Among the 35 tryout players at the Panthers rookie minicamp are two former Florida State specialists, punter Shawn Powell and long snapper Dax Dellenbach. - Panthers

February 28, 2014 - kicker Graham Gano re-signed
"Gano, coming off his best season as a pro, re-signed with the Panthers on Friday through the 2017 season. He was among 21 players on last year's roster that could have become unrestricted free agents when the new league year ends March 11.... Gano, in his fifth NFL season – his first full season with the Panthers – made a career-best 88.9 percent of his field goals, connecting on 24-of-27 kicks while making all 42 on his extra points. Gano was especially good from long range, setting a franchise record and tying for the NFL lead with six field goals of 50 yards or more. He converted on all of his 50-plus-yard attempts, including a game-winning 53-yarder at San Francisco in Week 10. No one else in the NFL made more than three kicks from 50 or more yards without a miss. Gano's strong leg got the job done on kickoffs as well. He recorded touchbacks on 77.8 percent of his kickoffs, the highest percentage in the NFL since 1994." - Carolina Panthers