Michael Pallas Aug 12th, 2019
Chandler Catanzaro retired, and that opened things for the New York Jets kicking game. They should unequivocally bring former Chicago Bears kicker Cody Parkey into training camp for a chance to make the team.
Fans of the New York Jets are clamoring for them to sign former Atlanta Falcons kicker Matt Bryant, and it’s easy to see why. At 44 years old, he’s still one of the most accurate kickers in the National Football League. It would be nice to land him, but what about another player — Cody Parkey.
From both a mental and statistical standpoint, Parkey definitely had the worst season of his career in 2018. He has a career-low in FG% (76.7%), and of course, we all remember the “double doink” in the playoff game against Philadelphia.
That being said, the Jets are really in “beggars can’t be choosers” territory here. They can’t only hope for the best player available at this point. In three of his four seasons prior to last season, he made a minimum of 80% of his field goal attempts, with two of them being well over. (In his second season in Philadelphia he only attempted four on the season.)
What if Bryant hits a wall during the season? He is 44 after all. Last season, one of the best kickers ever — Sebastian Janikowski — only made 70% of his kicks, and he’s 41.
This isn’t to sign him to a long-term deal. Just bring Parkey into camp and see what he can do. He’s 27. How would you be looked at if you were judged on your lowest moments in your 20s?
This is what training camp is for. He’s still young enough to prove he can bounce back from the bad season. Plus, it’s just one bad season. Bryant has three sub-80% seasons in his career.
There really aren’t other choices other than him and Bryant at this point. There’s no harm in bringing him into camp and see if he has gotten over the demons from last season. If he has, the Jets have their kicker for 2019, if not, then the search continues.
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