Commanders Release K Michael Badgley

The Commanders’ kicking competition is over. Washington is releasing K Michael Badgley, as Tom Pelissero of the NFL Network tweets, which means that Joey Slye will remain the team’s placekicker.

After two disappointing seasons with the Panthers from 2019-20 that saw him post a poor 79.4% success rate on field goal tries, Slye had three-game cameos with the Texans and 49ers in 2021 before winding up in the nation’s capital for the second half of that season. His performance (12/12 on field goal attempts, 9/10 on extra point attempts) earned him a two-year contract last April.

Unfortunately, the 2022 campaign was not as successful, as Slye hit on just 83.3% of his FG attempts and missed four of his 28 PATs. Badgley, meanwhile, also had an 83.3% FG conversion rate in 12 games with the Lions last season, though he made all 33 of his PATs. Detroit re-signed him in March, and while it appeared as if he was the frontrunner in the club’s kicking battle, he was released last month. He quickly caught on with the Commanders but will have to search for another new home.

Now 28, Badgley has been unable to replicate the success he enjoyed during his 2018 rookie season with the Chargers. His 93.8% success rate on field goals and 96.4% success rate on PATs that year earned him his “Money Badger” nickname and appeared to solidify him as a fixture on the Bolts’ special teams unit for the foreseeable future. However, he appeared in just eight games in 2019 due to injury, and he endured an awful 2020, converting 72.7% of his field goal tries and missing several crucial kicks. The Chargers cut him prior to the 2021 season, and he bounced around to the Titans, Colts, Bears, and Lions over the next two years.

Washington has played one preseason game this summer, a 17-15 victory over the Browns. In that contest, Slye hit his lone FG attempt, a 49-yarder, and his only extra point try. Badgley also converted his one extra point attempt and did not get a shot at a field goal. As ESPN’s John Keim tweets, Slye and Badgley performed similarly in training camp with respect to their field goal and PAT work, but Slye had the clear advantage in terms of kickoffs.

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