Ryan Succop Embraces His Competition

May 20th, 2022

Click on through to shop at BillCurrieFord.com. Bill Currie Ford GM Sean Sullivan is ready to help you PERSONALLY and give you the Ira Kaufman discount. Just ask!


For far too long, it was a running joke at One Buc Place. Only something was wrong — it wasn’t funny.

Tampa Bay’s madcap search for a reliable kicker to replace Matt Bryant appeared to end in 2020 when Ryan Succop helped the Bucs to a Vince Lombardi Trophy. Succop made 28-of-31 FG attempts during the regular season and closed out the Super Bowl scoring with a 52-yarder against the Chiefs.

Super Bowl kicker Ryan Succop will have to earn his job this season.

But just when Buc fans had nothing to kick about, Succop finds himself in danger of losing his job before he turns 36 in September.

Jose Borregales, a 24-year-old Venezuelean kicker who won the Lou Groza Award at the University of Miami in 2020, intends to unseat Succop, who is coming off a difficult season.

The problems began at the start of 2021 training camp, where Succop struggled. He kept his job but failed on five FG tries and five extra-point attempts last year. Twice, he was placed on the COVID-19 list.

“Competition makes you better,” says Succop, the last player selected in the 2009 draft. “We’re all competitors and I look forward to that. Jose is a great kid. He’s very talented and he has a very bright future in this league.”

Succop is no stranger to challenges.

As Mr. Irrelevant, he nailed 86 percent of his FG tries as a rookie with the Chiefs. Moving on to Tennessee in 2014, Succop established himself as one of the NFL’s most reliable kickers. At one point, he converted 56 consecutive FG attempts from less than 50 yards before missing a 48-yarder against Cincinnati in poor weather.

A knee injury basically wrecked Succop’s 2019 season in Nashville. He appeared in only six games and was ineffective, so the Titans cut him in the offseason. Given a fresh start in Tampa, Succop has seen the Bucs go 29-10.

“It’s been an amazing two years here, winning the Super Bowl and stacking up some wins last season,” he says. “In 2019, I definitely went through some adversity, but I was able to battle back and obviously ended up in a great spot. It’s turned out to be a huge blessing.”

Between Bryant’s release in 2009 and Succop’s signing as a relatively cheap free agent, the Bucs went through enough kickers to field a soccer team. Remember Connor Barth, Mike Nugent, Shane Andrus, Rian Lindell, Kyle Brindza, Roberto Aguayo, Patrick Murray, Nick Folk, Chandler Catanzaro, Cairo Santos and Matt Gay?

You can’t make this stuff up. And the motley list doesn’t even include Lawrence Tynes, who was signed in 2013 but never played a game for the Bucs after contracting MRSA and suing the franchise.

It won’t be easy for the Bucs braintrust to ditch Succop in favor of an unproven kicker. In the past two postseasons, Succop has made 12-of-13 FG tries and 19-of-20 extra-point attempts. The issue is Borregales has the stronger leg, and the Bucs got to see it up close as he sat on the practice squad last season.

Big judgment call coming for Todd Bowles.

Succop’s lack of range can be a hindrance. In his last 39 regular-season games, Succop is 1-for-4 from 50 yards out or more, converting from 50 against Green Bay in 2020.

Star Power

Borregales and began his college career at Florida International, dazzled Coral Gables fans with a 57-yarder against Louisville in only his second game at UM.

Nobody was more stunned that Borregales went undrafted than former Hurricane coach Manny Diaz.

“As soon as Jose walked in the very first time we did a field goal drill in spring practice, he nailed one through the uprights and the whole team erupted in applause,” Diaz said. “It’s a confidence factor in how you call plays when you cross the 50. It’s a confidence factor when you get into tight games.”

New head coach Todd Bowles will make the ultimate call at One Buc Place in consultation with his staff and Jason Licht. Bowles will rely on what his eyes see and what his gut tells him.

“I think I had a solid year,” Succop says. “It’s kicking … you’ve got a funny-shaped foot kicking a funny-shaped ball. Every now and then, stuff is going to happen. The key is not to let the previous kick influence the next one.”

Yes, that warranty includes USED vehicles!
Ira drives a 2020 Ford Escape (cherry red).

12 Responses to “Ryan Succop Embraces His Competition”

  1. MadMax Says:

    We need $ and room for a 53 man roster. If he makes the cut, all good. I was a USC fan (not anymore), and I watched him a lot. Make your money, but understand theres competition coming.

  2. Buccos Says:

    It will be a great competition. Let the best man win and we aren’t giving out any participation trophies either!

  3. Dooley Says:

    Raachad White wants Succops’ number lol

  4. MadMax Says:

    ^ LOL, he’ll probably get it. Im a big fan of RW…great pick!

  5. Lt. Dan Says:

    Connor Barth was pretty awesome and the braintrust at One Buc did not give Matt Gay much of a chance. The dudes in between….meh.

    My favorite of all time though was Michael Husted. Dude was a kicker with a linebackers mentality. He had no problem lighting dudes up on a kickoff.

  6. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Succop is about $3mil behind at this point…..if they are even…..save the money.

    Camarda can do kickoffs so we won’t miss Pinion….

  7. Crickett Baker Says:

    My favorite was Ypremian (sp?) but I never felt safe when any kicker had to play until Succup. Then he somehow got me back into those nerves last season. sigh

  8. Cobraboy Says:

    Barth was excellent before his basketball injury.

    I agree with Lt. Dan: Husted was an outstanding kicker, as was Grammatica.

    But what an experience to be in RayJay when Bryant nailed that 62-yarder to crush the Iggle soul…

  9. sasquatch Says:

    We need to do better. Hoping Borregales can win the job.

  10. BUCman Says:

    Borregales looks like the real deal. Succup is good but his range is a liability. As long as Jose shows consistently through the summer he’s got the job.

  11. '79 Defense Says:

    Whatever happens with him, he deserves tons of respect for how he delivered in 2020. He gave us just what we needed when needed the most.

    And what a clutch 46 yard kick in the GB playoff win to put us up by eight. GB didn’t tie it with a TD and conversion, but they might have scored and taken the lead given the different scenario of being down only five and beginning with better field position. You never know.

  12. Bruce Blahak Says:

    Donald kicker was the best Buc kicker….