FanPost

Punting Party? Who's Next...

So I was going to post an article after work about who the Bills should look to in the draft for next year's punter, but the Bills (thankfully) decided to preempt this article by releasing Shawn Powell on October 5th. Powell’s problem was consistency; he had some really booming punts at times, but often shanked some or had a low hang time. Hence the reason why the Browns had 179 yards of punt returns last night.

So the question is, who is out there who can at least play out the rest of the season for the Bills. There are a few names you may recognize and here they are (with their stats for the last 3 years courtesy of ESPN and CFB Stats among others.).

PUNTER

Punts

Yards

Avg.

In20

In20%

TB

TB%

Net Yds.

Chris Kluwe

232

10,323

44.5

72

31.0%

10

4.3%

39.7

Brian Moorman

218

9,832

45.1

61

28.0%

21

9.6%

39.5

Mat McBriar

178

8,217

46.2

56

31.5%

22

12.4%

41.4

Brian Stahovich*

175

7,749

44.3

45

25.7%

21

12.0%

40.8

Reggie Hodges

235

9,847

41.9

74

31.5%

14

6.0%

38.3

Nick Harris

229

9,876

43.1

58

25.3%

14

6.1%

38.2

Jeremy Kapinos

118

5,175

43.9

32

27.1%

14

11.9%

37.9

Here are my top seven free agent punters bio blasts. Have fun!

1. Chris Kluwe – Age 31 (ESPN Stats)

Kluwe tops my list given his age, experience and statistics. He was narrowly beaten out after a long preseason battle for the starting job in Oakland, because he is that good. Before that he started several years with the Vikings. It’s not a sure bet he would be the top choice, but he definitely has talent. He has the third highest punt average and net yard average on the list, hits 31% inside the 20 and has just 4.3% go for touchbacks.

2. Brian Moorman – Age 37 (ESPN Stats)

Perhaps one of the most revered and respected punters ever in the Bills organization, Moorman skills are on the decline slightly which resulted in the Bills letting him go last year, and the Cowboys after that season as well. Still, he can bring reliable punting, holding (and maybe trick plays) to the table. Moorman has the 2nd highest and 4th highest in yards per punt and net average respectively. He has 28% go inside the 20, but the biggest draw is that he knows the conditions of Buffalo very well. Oh yeah, he also went to two Pro Bowls.

3. Mat McBriar – Age 34 (ESPN Stats)

McBriar, an Aussie, leads in several categories including best punt average, net average and inside the 20 (tied). So then why knock him to third? He also has the highest percentage of touchbacks of the punters on the list. Don’t get me wrong, McBriar is good – 2 time Pro Bowler good – but he can overdo the kicks on occasion. McBriar was narrowly beat out by Chaz Henry with the Eagles and before played a lot with the Cowboys.

4. Brian Stahovich – Age 23 (CFB Stats)

Stahovich’s biggest draw is that he is young and spent 4 months with the Bills this offseason so he is familiar with some of Marrone’s plays. Despite, a hyped-up training camp battle, Powell’s bigger leg won over Stahovich’s more consistent performance, so take that as you will. As Stahovich lacks any real NFL experience, I used his college stats using an array of sources. Stahovtich has a really good net yards average and punt average, but was on the lower end in terms of inside the 20 and touchbacks.

5. Reggie Hodges – Age 31 (ESPN Stats)

Hodges is unique in that he is one of the few African American punters out there. While he has only averaged 41.3 yards a punt, he also has 31.5% fall inside the 20 and 6% go back for touchbacks. A few years back he had a season ending Achilles tendon tear and has played with several teams, mostly the Browns.

6. Nick Harris – Age 35 (ESPN Stats)

A long time punter of the Lions, Harris’s better days are behind him. He and Kapinos have an outside chance at best to being the punter in my humble opinion. Harris does not get too many touchbacks, but has some of the shorter punting averages and nets of the seven listed and had the lowest of the group with just over 25% of his punts ending up inside the 20.

7. Jeremy Kapinos – Age 29 (ESPN Stats)

Kapinos is the lowest ranked punter on my list given the worst net average of the group and a high 12% going back for touchbacks. Kapinos has also been off the field longer than other punters, his most recent stint being back in 2011 with the Steelers.

Any favorites in the upcoming punter battle? Keep your fingers crossed and as always…

Go Bills!

Just another great fan opinion shared on the pages of BuffaloRumblings.com.

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