Matt Bryant And The Kickoff Problem

February 26th, 2019

Yes, a lot of Bucs fans are yearning for Tampa Bay to sign free agent kicker and former Buccaneer Matt Bryant, who turns 44 in May.

That’s right, 44 and coming off an injury.

There’s a divide on this subject in the hallowed hallways of world headquarters.

Typing this is a Joe who thinks the move would be preposterous and silly. Snap out of this kicker lunacy, Bucs, and sign a young guy who can get the job done for several years, not a guy unlikely to be around when the Bucs are true Super Bowl contenders. The other Joe says he could understand and embrace a Bryant signing because he’s been effective with the Falcons and the injury and age aren’t the biggest deals.

Well, a potential Bryant signing is more complex than meets the eye because he doesn’t kick off. Joe didn’t realize Bryant hadn’t handled that important duty since he left the Bucs.

 Chicago Tribune beat writer Brad Biggs noted this in a recent Q & A session with fans.

I just saw that Matt Bryant got released from the Falcons. I know he’s 44 years old so wanted to know how much you think he has left in the tank. — Jeff J., Parts Unknown

It didn’t take long for a couple of questions about Bryant’s availability to hit the Mailbag inbox. The Falcons informed Bryant last week that he would be released with two years and $7 million remaining on his contract. The veteran turns 44 in May and has made it clear he intends to continue his career. Bryant connected on 20 of 21 field-goal tries in 2018. He missed three games with a hamstring injury. I don’t think you can rule anyone out when you consider options for the Bears in the soon to be post-Cody Parkey era. However, it’s important to note Bryant hasn’t handled kickoff duties since 2008 when he was with the Buccaneers. Unless the Bears plan to find a punter who can do double duty or Bryant can handle kickoffs once again, he’s probably not in play for them. Bryant hasn’t kicked for a team that plays in a cold-weather outdoor stadium since he began his career with the Giants in 2002-03. While he remains reliable on field goals, my guess is the Bears’ first choice would be someone younger than Bryant with experience handling kickoffs. The more options the Bears have to sort through, the better.

Could Bucs punter Bryan Anger handle kickoffs? Will he make the team? Anger wasn’t special last year.

Can Bryant kick off and actually put the ball in the end zone?

Man, it would be a such a post-Chucky Buccaneers move to sign ancient Bryant and be looking for a kicker again in 2020.

20 Responses to “Matt Bryant And The Kickoff Problem”

  1. Jean Lafitte Says:

    There’s been a couple of AAF kickers putting up numbers right now. By the time we start camp there should be enough kicks to decide if any of them are worth an NFL contract. That’s what I like about this new league, it provides 2nd chances and gives undrafted JAG’s a shot to make an NFL team. After the draft this maybe where we going shopping for free.

  2. Wright Says:

    The red socks didn’t end their curse by bringing back the great Bambino… Likewise, Bucs shouldn’t entertain bringing back Bryant.

  3. Kyle Hoge Says:

    the guy is 44, at some point our scouts have to do their fkn jobs. We need a young kicker that can kick fgs and handle kickoff duties. This matt bryant nonsense is a joke. Move on Joe

  4. unbelievable Says:

    I love Matt Bryant.

    It was a colossal mistake to release him. One that we have NEVER recovered from.

    That said, I agree with you guys- scouts do their fkn job and find someone already. Plus we can’t tie up an extra roster spot just for a kick-off guy (unless the punter can do it, of course).

    It’s comical at this point how terrible the kicking game has been since Bryant left.

  5. TBBucman Says:

    Bryant is too old and expensive, $ is needed to sign free agents. Release Anger and save $.

    Like to see Landon Collins or the Honey Badger at Safety this year.

    Hope they trade back and get a extra 2nd. O/L, RB would be nice. Like the Memphis RB later.

  6. catcard202 Says:

    Austin MacGinnis still waiting on a call…

  7. Alaskan Abdominal Snowman Says:

    But it will lift the curse…

    Pretty sure we we a cursed franchise long before Bryant was let go. I can’t remember a season in a long time where at some point we didn’t do something ridiculously embarrassing.

    Find that African kid that knows four words: Kick ball, make money.

  8. Lunchbox Says:

    Ok, a couple things here. First, we should’ve never let him go in the first place. I think we can all agree on that. But then, dude is 44 now. Yeah he might have a year left in the tank. Maybe. And yeah it would feel good to welcome him back. But when it comes to wins and losses? Is a feel good signing really worth that? That’s a big fat NO!!!! Sign a young guy out of college, no higher than a 7th round pick, and stick with him. Oh and by the way, let Bruce do the picking this time.

  9. Bird Says:

    Career kicking history of around 90 % field goals made every year.
    People …there are only a few clutch kickers in nfl that are worth a damn. So many teams lose games each year cause their kicker is not in that top 3rd.

    Adam vinateri is in that top third. He is 46 years old. You all want to go out and get some young kicker ? From where ? Clutch kickers aren’t grow on trees. Sure there are 32 teams. There are about 10-15 that are worth a damn. Matt Bryant is usually around top 5.

    Who cares about kick offs. The kick off is shorter distance and most blast into endzone and teams get at 25 now. I almost want a kick off guy that lands it on the 0-5 yard line, so team has to tAke out. Bryant can do that.

    Bucs are in win mode now. Use Bryant for a year or two. Hopefully , the kid from Europe they signed will get look and no how to kick by then.

  10. Defense Rules Says:

    For $3 mil, see if you can use all these words in the same sentence: Kicker – Hamstring injury – 44 years old – $3 mil plus. Nah, they just don’t fit together. Pass.

    And while we’re looking for a kicker, might want to also be on the lookout for a punter. Bryan Anger has a very good leg & has averaged slightly over 45 yds per punt in his 7-year career. But if the Bucs end up being really strapped for cash, his $3 mil salary is near the top in the NFL for punters (only 3 make more … barely). Several youngsters in the 2019 draft who averaged 45 yard/punt or better.

  11. Bird Says:

    Bryant won’t get /ask 3 mil per year. That was his last contract that is voided since he was cut. He signed that years ago when considered top 5 kicker in league.

    Guestimates half that at 1.5 mil per year.

    So funny how people are like pass. Hell no.

    It’s not easy to find a kicker worth a damn in this league.
    Oh let’s draft one from college . Anyone remember Roberto Aguayo. They considered him potentially the best college kicker of all time when entering draft. Look how he turned out.

    If Bryant meet physical , this is no brainer.

  12. Bird Says:

    Now Anger on the other end is a goner.

    3 mil is a lot for punter and his average play . Not worth it. He has dropped off last few years.

  13. Cobraboy Says:

    Elliot Fry of the Orlando Apollos in the AAF has been perfect in 3 games and shows excellent form. Might be worth a look.

    Bryant? No. At 44 one becomes injury prone.

  14. Bird Says:

    Vinateri is 46 And still considered elite

  15. 813bucboi Says:

    we’re talking about curses and kickers?….lol….

    score more TD’s will solve the problem….more TD’s and less 40+ yard FG’s…..


  16. DooshLaRue Says:

    Yeah, letting Bryant go still pisses me off but gotta say pass on him at this point.

    And Anger?

    Let’s just say that he has been the one constant cog in our kicking woes for many years.
    I know at least one Joe has called me out for saying he might be responsible but I think there is something to it.

  17. SteveK Says:

    Beyond pathetic that Licht spent a second round pick and numerous FA$$ and still doesn’t have a kicker. Just pathetic. We call ourselves an NFL team, but we are a laughingstock.

  18. Jean Lafitte Says:


    he’s definitely one to watch

  19. SteveK Says:


    For sure! Just get a kicker that is consistent. Easier said than done for Licht.

    Licht goofed cutting Patrick Murray for Kyle Brindza. Licht hasn’t that good at scouting and rosterbating.

  20. BucsLife Says: