After beginning the season out of football, Michael Badgley could play for two NFC North teams in two weeks. Shortly after the Bears released the veteran kicker from their practice squad, he landed with the Lions, Tom Pelissero of NFL.com tweets. It is a practice squad deal.
Badgley fared well as the Bears’ Cairo Santos replacement Sunday, but with Santos back, Chicago went back to its one-kicker setup. The Lions have a similar need, with Austin Seibert battling a groin injury. Seibert joined Santos in missing Week 4. If Badgley kicks for the Lions on Sunday, he will be the team’s sixth kicker over the past two seasons.
The Lions used Dominik Eberle as their kicker against the Seahawks, but after Eberle missed two extra points in Detroit’s shootout loss, he is back in free agency. The Lions waived Eberle on Tuesday. Badgley is now in line to be Seibert’s Week 5 fill-in, should another replacement be necessary.
Badgley went 4-for-4 on field goals with the Bears, who did not score a touchdown in Sunday’s loss to the Giants. He spent most of last season with the Colts, joining the team after Rodrigo Blankenship‘s early-season injury. Badgley, 27, was 18-for-21 on field goals with Indianapolis. Week 4 marked Eberle’s second NFL game. The 26-year-old specialist made the only field goal he attempted but was 2 of 4 on PAT tries, which impacted the Lions in their 48-45 loss to the Seahawks. A Utah State product, Eberle kicked in one game with the Texans last year.
The Lions had Matt Prater installed as their kicker for several years, but instability has defined this job since the veteran signed with the Cardinals in 2021. Last season, four kickers — including Seibert — saw action for Detroit.