Giorgio Tavecchio

Giants Hold Kicker Workout

A year after Aldrick Rosas made the Pro Bowl, the Giants are working out kickers. Rosas missed two field goals in the Giants’ five-point loss to the Bears.

The Giants brought in kickers Blair Walsh, Giorgio Tavecchio, Austin MacGinnis and Cole Hedlund on Tuesday, according to the Houston Chronicle’s Aaron Wilson (on Twitter).

While Rosas did not kick well in Week 12, also booting a kickoff out of bounds, it would still be rather surprising to see a team give up on a third-year kicker who received a 2018 Pro Bowl invite. Rosas made 32 of 33 field goal tries last season and missed just one extra point. This year, he has not received nearly as many field goal chances. The former UDFA out of Southern Oregon is 8-for-12 on field goals and has missed three PATs.

Walsh caught on briefly with the Falcons and worked out for the Patriots and Jets this year. He also took part in a January workout for the then-kicker-needy Bears. Tavecchio and Walsh were briefly Falcons teammates this summer. The former held Atlanta’s kicking job for part of the 2018 season.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFL Workout Updates: 11/1/19

The latest from the workout circuit around the league:

Denver Broncos

Detroit Lions

Jacksonville Jaguars

New York Jets

Oakland Raiders

NFL Workout Updates: 10/16/19

Here is the latest from the workout circuit:

Chicago Bears

Cincinnati Bengals

Cleveland Browns

Green Bay Packers

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

Kansas City Chiefs

New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints

New York Jets

Pittsburgh Steelers

Seattle Seahawks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tennessee Titans

Washington Redskins

Falcons Reach 53 Man Limit

The Falcons reached the 53-man limit by dropping a total of 35 players and placing quarterback Matt Simms on injured reserve. Along the way, the Falcons also cut some notable veterans.

Here’s the full rundown of the team’s cuts, including some previously reported moves:

S Parker Baldwin
LB Yurik Bethune
WR Christian Blake
RB Tony Brooks-James
LB Richie Brown (Waived/injured)
CB Taveze Calhoun (Waived/injured)
LB Bruce Carter (Released)
DT Stefan Charles (Released)
S Chris Cooper
LB Tre Crawford
TE Thomas Duarte
QB Danny Etling
OL Adam Gettis (Released)
TE Alex Gray (Waived/injured)
WR Devin Gray
WR Marcus Green
OL Sean Harlow
DE Austin Larkin
S Ronald Martin (Released)
LB Chase Middleton
DE Durrant Miles
C Chandler Miller
CB Jalen Myrick
CB Ryan Neal
DE Chris Odom
TE Logan Paulsen (Released)
LB Del’Shawn Phillips (Waived/injury settlement)
OT Jaelin Robinson
CB Jayson Stanley (Waived/injury settlement)
K Giorgio Tavecchio
DT Jacob Tuioti-Mariner
K Blair Walsh (Released)
OL John Wetzel (Released)
WR C.J. Worton
DT Justin Zimmer

Falcons To Sign K Blair Walsh

Another kicker shakeup may occur this preseason. With their incumbent kicker struggling, the Falcons will sign Blair Walsh, Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com reports (on Twitter). While Giorgio Tavecchio remains on the team, he is now set for a full-fledged competition.

The Falcons confirmed the move, which comes after Dan Quinn suggested the team would bring in competition for Tavecchio. The third-year kicker has struggled during the preseason, missing 4 of 8 attempts — including a 39-yarder — thus far this month.

A Georgia alum, Walsh worked out for the Jets and Bears this year. Both teams opted against adding the former Vikings kicker. Should Walsh beat out Tavecchio, he would face his former team in Week 1. Walsh did not play in 2018.

Walsh has not kicked since a disappointing 2017 season. The Seahawks moved on from him after he went 21-for-29 that season. Minnesota initially selected Walsh in the 2012 sixth round and used him as its kicker for five seasons. The 29-year-old specialist earned All-Pro acclaim as a rookie, going 10-for-10 from beyond 50 yards, but his miss inside of 30 yards cost the Vikings a wild-card win against the Seahawks in 2015. He has yet to fully rebound from that errant try.

The Falcons also signed defensive tackle Stefan Charles and tight end Thomas Duarte. To make room for this new trio, the team waived wide receivers Shawn Bane and Kahlil Lewis, along with offensive lineman Tommy Doles.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Falcons May Replace Giorgio Tavecchio

Giorgio Tavecchio might be on shaky ground. After another rocky preseason performance, Falcons head coach Dan Quinn indicated that he might look into replacing the kicker. 

Any time at any position, when we miss the mark, we want to find out why and what we can do to get better,” Quinn said. “It’s definitely a spot we are continuing to evaluate and that is always the case.”

Tavecchio’s latest miss came on a 39-yard try, which is a chip shot by NFL standards. That was his fourth miss in eight attempts this preseason, which could be enough for Quinn to kick him off the roster.

My focus is always on myself and controlling the controllable,” Tavecchio said. “There’s a lot of things out of your control in this business. I know when I wake up every morning, I say a little prayer of gratitude and give my best each day.”

Tavecchio joined the Falcons in the middle of the 2018 season to fill in for longtime Falcons kicker Matt Bryant. This offseason, they parted ways with the clutch-kicking veteran and moved forward with the former Raider, but they might be having second thoughts about that plan.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Falcons To Sign Giorgio Tavecchio

The Falcons have agreed to sign kicker Giorgio Tavecchio to a two-year deal, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter). Tavecchio, who was with the club in camp, will hold down the fort while starter Matt Bryant recovers from a hamstring injury.

Tavecchio, 28, was released by the Raiders earlier this year, despite a decent 2017 season in which he made 16 of 21 field goal attempts, including three from 50-plus yards. He also made 33 of his 34 extra point attempts last year. He was signed in August to compete for the top job, but that was a longshot given Bryant’s track record. While Tavecchio missed the final cut, the Falcons kept his number handy.

Through six games, the ageless Bryant has nailed all nine of his field goal attempts, including three tries from 50 yards or more. For at least a game or two, Tavecchio will try to uphold the high standard Bryant has set.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

South Rumors: Falcons, Buccaneers, Morgan

The Falcons will be looking for a new kicker for temporary purposes. Matt Bryant will miss Atlanta’s Week 7 Monday night game, Dan Quinn said. The longtime Falcons kicker is dealing with a strained hamstring, per Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com, who adds Giorgio Tavecchio is among the names the Falcons are considering as a replacement. Tavecchio was briefly affiliated with the Falcons earlier this year, but Bryant’s kicked in all six Falcon games in his 10th season with the franchise. He hasn’t missed a game since he was limited to 11 appearances in 2015. Tavecchio will be among “a number of kickers” considered during the lead-up to the Falcons’ home Monday-nighter against the Giants.

Here’s the latest from the South divisions, continuing on the Atlanta injury front:

  • Another week of recovery will likely be required for Devonta Freeman, per McClure. The Falcons’ starting running back is has dealt with knee and foot trouble and now has a groin issue to overcome. Atlanta’s gotten by with Tevin Coleman and newcomer Ito Smith in the backfield.
  • Ali Marpet became the latest Buccaneers starter to sign a lucrative extension, joining Mike Evans and Cameron Brate in doing so this year. More re-ups could be on track. Kwon Alexander and the Bucs are still talking an extension, Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times reports. While Stroud writes it’s uncertain if the Bucs want to pay Alexander like a top-tier linebacker — they have Lavonte David on the books at $10MM per year — he’s on the radar. As is fourth-year left tackle Donovan Smith, who’s in a contract year. Despite rarely being viewed as a productive player by Pro Football Focus, Smith is well thought of among Bucs brass, per Stroud. Adam Humphries is another player the Bucs would like to retain, though they have a crowded receiver room. Chris Godwin‘s emerged as Tampa Bay’s No. 3 man and may be Evans’ top complement if DeSean Jackson ($10MM non-guaranteed salary in 2019) isn’t back next year. Humphries’ contract expires after this season.
  • Derrick Morgan will miss a few weeks because of a shoulder injury, Mike Vrabel said. A ninth-year player who dealt with a knee injury during the preseason, Morgan has played in all six Titans games this year and has only missed more than two games in a season once in the past eight years. Harold Landry will likely start opposite Brian Orakpo in the meantime.
  • Stationed on the Texans‘ PUP list, D’Onta Foreman can return to practice this week but probably won’t, per Bill O’Brien (via Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle, on Twitter). Foreman’s been out since late last season because of an Achilles’ tendon tear.
  • Braden Smith appears to have solidified himself as the Colts‘ right tackle. Indianapolis went through several players in hopes of identifying a candidate, but Frank Reich said Monday (via ESPN.com’s Mike Wells, on Twitter) this job will be Smith’s to lose. Smith’s started three games for the Colts this season.
  • Former Lions, Patriots and Bengals linebacker Marquis Flowers worked out for the Texans on Monday, Sarah Barshop of ESPN.com tweets. The Lions cut Flowers last week. He played in 16 games for the Bengals in 2015 and ’16 and suited up for all 19 of the Patriots’ games last year.

Raiders To Add K Matt McCrane

After 17 seasons featuring the same kicker, the Raiders are pivoting to a third in the past two years.

While Mike Nugent battles a hip injury, the Raiders are adding another leg in rookie UDFA Matt McCrane, Mike Garafolo of NFL.com tweets. McCrane went to camp with the Cardinals this year.

Nugent was only added after Oakland opted to cut Giorgio Tavecchio, its 2017 kicker. Tavecchio was also on the list of specialists the Raiders auditioned on Tuesday, with Sirius XM Radio’s Adam Caplan reporting (via Twitter) Tavecchio joined McCrane, Michael Badgley, Jon Brown and Trevor Moore.

Nugent suffered a hip malady in the Raiders’ loss to the Dolphins on Sunday. He remains on the Raiders’ roster, giving them a two-kicker setup going into Week 4. The Raiders used Tavecchio last season and Nugent for the first three games of this one, after Nugent beat out rookie UDFA Joel Pineiro for the job. Prior to that, Sebastian Janikowski served as the Raiders’ kicker from 2000-16.

A Kansas State product, McCrane spent four seasons as the primary kicker for the Big 12 program. He made 57 of his 66 career kicks — by the end of his sophomore season he’d made 25 of 26 kicks — and earned an invitation to the East-West Shrine Game. He could not beat out Phil Dawson for the Cardinals’ kicking job in camp.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFL Workout Updates: 9/17/18

Today’s workout updates, with all links going to NFL reporter Howard Balzer’s of Twitter account unless otherwise noted:

Baltimore Ravens

Cincinnati Bengals

Cleveland Browns

Dallas Cowboys

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

New York Jets

Philadelphia Eagles

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

  • TE Nick O’Leary (link)

Tennessee Titans

Washington Redskins