With Pat O’Donnell battling a knee injury, the Bears are signing a free agent punter, according to Jeff Dickerson of ESPN.com, who reports (via Twitter) that Spencer Lanning has agreed to a deal with the team. There hasn’t been an official announcement from the team yet on O’Donnell’s status, but the signing of Lanning doesn’t bode well for the incumbent punter’s availability this weekend.
In 2014, only two punters had more attempts than the 93 punts Lanning made for the Browns. On those 93 attempts, he averaged 44.5 yards, with a net distance of 39.2 yards per punt. Those were middle-of-the-road numbers, and the Browns decided to move on from Lanning back in June, acquiring Andy Lee from the 49ers for a conditional 2017 seventh-round pick.
Lanning, 27, was claimed off waivers by the Buccaneers after being dropped by the Browns, and also spent time with the Broncos this summer, but he didn’t survive Denver’s cutdown to 53 players. Lanning, who also worked out for the Panthers earlier this week, auditioned for the Bears yesterday, along with former Giants punter Steve Weatherford.