"kickoff Specialists"-yea Or Nay?
Posted 11 May 2007 - 10:51 AM
I'm not talking about a guy who also does long field goals, like 50+ yards and kickoffs, while a more accurate kicker handles filed goals 49 yards or less. Some teams have that arrangement. I mean a guy who isn't there to kick field goals at all, just do kickoffs.
As you can see, in most cases field goal kickers tend to be average size guys or smaller. Even the few "long range plus kickoff" players we see are essentially people who started out trying to kick field goals and who were not so good at that, but had the ability to do kickoffs better than the others.
I have also seen large linemen who kicked in high school be used for kickoffs, on the principle that the larger and heavier the leg doing the kicking, the farther the football goes, (all other things being equal). It didn't work out, because the lineman did not have very good technique. In other words, all other things were not equal, in those cases.
I am talking about a true kickoff specialist. A large guy who has no interest or ability to kick field goals, but who, when given 10 steps or more to run up to the tee, will kick that thing way outta the end zone.
Our field goal kickers now are average sized guys selected primarily to accurately kick field goals. Some get better depth on their kickoffs than others. Open up a roster spot for kickoff specialists, and watch those kickoffs boom.
Of course, as one team does this and experiences success, other teams will follow and eventually the league will move back the line where the ball is kicked, so there will be kickoff returns. But that will take years. In the intervening years, the first team or two who gets the kickoff specialist will have an advantage over other teams.
Large, strong legged people are out there physically capable of propelling the ball a long ways, as long as they can run up to the ball. The team which realizes this, and couples such a player with a truly accurate field goal specialist, gives itself "a leg up" on the rest of the league.
Posted 11 May 2007 - 12:03 PM
Posted 11 May 2007 - 01:28 PM
Posted 11 May 2007 - 04:07 PM
I'd only be for bringing one in if Nugent can't add a couple more yards to his kickoffs. If he can add a bit of strength then I'd rather we have more depth at other positions as they are likely to make more of a contribution overall than a kickoff specialist, for example a STs gem who is great in kick coverage.