Panthers Sticking With Kicker Graham Gano

The Panthers are standing by kicker Graham Gano even after he missed another critical kick during yesterday’s contest against the Saints, as head coach Ron Rivera told reporters, including Joe Person of Charlotte Observer.Graham Gano (Vertical)

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“We’re going to stand pat,” Rivera said. “If you go back and you evaluate it as an extra-point kicker, he’s right about 95 percent, which is a little bit more than league average I believe. And then in clutch kicks, again he’s well above the league average.”

Gano missed an extra point on Sunday that would have allowed the Panthers to tie New Orleans late in a game that Carolina ultimately lost, dropping the club to 1-5 on the year. The 29-year old Gano was also wide on a game-winning field goal attempt in Week 1 against the Broncos, and missed another kick in a Week 5 loss to the Buccaneers.

For what it’s worth, Rivera didn’t sound quite so certain earlier in the day, as Bill Voth of Black and Blue Review writes. “Well, we’ll see,” Rivera said about Gano’s status. “You’ve got to look at what’s happened not just now but what’s happened over the period of time. There are some things that we’re going to look at and evaluate (over the bye week), obviously, and we’ll see what happens.”

If Carolina does opt to make a change, veteran kickers such as Robbie Gould, Randy Bullock, Kai Forbath, Garrett Hartley, and Shayne Graham present the best options on the free agent market.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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