Panthers K Eddy Pineiro Absent From OTAs

Absences around the NFL with respect to offseason workouts receives attention at a number of positions, but kicker is generally not one of them. In the case of Eddy Pineiro, though, the start of Panthers OTAs marked the next step in his decision to remain away from the team.

Pineiro has been absent throughout all of Carolina’s offseason, program, per Joe Person of The Athletic (subscription required). One year remains on his contract, and he is due to make $2MM in 2024. That falls well short of the top of the kicker market, and Pineiro will aim to land a raise on a new deal.

The 28-year-old began his NFL career with the Raiders, but his debut came as a member of the Bears. His Chicago campaign in 2019 was strong in terms of both field goals (23-of-28) and extra point attempts (27-of-29), but he did not see the field the following year. In 2021, Pineiro kicked for the Jets following an unsuccessful attempt to land the gig in Washington.

That was followed by a one-year Panthers deal signed in August 2022. Pineiro followed special teams coordinator Chris Tabor to Carolina after working alongside him in Chicago. The move allowed him to fill in for the injured Zane Gonzlezand it proved to be an effective one for team and player. Pineiro connected on all but two of his field goal attempts and two of his extra point kicks in 2022.

As a result, the Panthers made the unsurprising decision to retain the Florida product on a two-year accord. Last year, Pineiro saw his field goal (86.2%) and extra point (85%) accuracy dip, although overall his Panthers tenure has seen him remain one of the league’s most accurate kickers. Eight of Pineiro’s counterparts average at least $5MM per season on their respective deals, and he could be attempting to reach that level of compensation or at least another extension which moves him closer to the top 10.

Of course, the Panthers do have another kicker on their offseason roster. The team signed Harrison Mevis as a UDFA last month, and he is now in place to handle all kicking duties given Pineiro’s ongoing absence. The position will be one to monitor as the offseason progresses.

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