In the months since Brett Maher‘s postseason accuracy crisis, the Cowboys have not made a major addition at kicker. Tristan Vizcaino resides as the only one on Dallas’ offseason roster.
At least one team kept the Cowboys in mind as it shopped its kicker. The Jaguars contacted the Cowboys when trying to unload Riley Patterson, Todd Archer of ESPN.com notes. This came on a day in which the Jags signed longtime Bronco Brandon McManus, but after announcing they had cut Patterson, the AFC South team found a taker in the Lions. A low-level pick swap ensued to send Patterson back to Detroit.
The Cowboys did not show interest in McManus, according to Archer, who adds the team remains on the hunt at this position. Mike McCarthy mentioned XFL or USFL options. NFL teams are free to sign XFLers; several players who starred in the rebooted league are now on NFL rosters. The second USFL incarnation’s second season runs through July 1. The Cowboys found an All-Pro return man (KaVontae Turpin) from the USFL last year, though they may be eyeing more experience at kicker.
Maher, who worked out for the Broncos last week, remains available. Post-draft, the Cowboys did not shut down — Maher’s five playoff PAT misses aside — another agreement with their two-stint specialist. Maher, who holds the NFL record for most 60-plus-yard field goals (four), went 29-for-32 on field goals last year. That included 9 of 11 makes from beyond 50 yards. But Maher’s postseason issues hampered Dallas down the stretch.
Special teams coordinator John Fassel brought up free agents Robbie Gould, Mason Crosby and Ryan Succop. The 49ers chose Jake Moody in Round 3 to replace Gould, while Archer indicates the Cowboys were not interested in drafting a kicker in the third or fourth rounds like the 49ers and Patriots (Chad Ryland, Round 4) did. Gould, 40, has been an NFL kicker for 18 seasons. Crosby logged 16 with the Packers, who drafted Anders Carlson in the sixth round. Succop spent the past three seasons with the Bucs, stopping Tampa Bay’s near-decade-long kicker carousel.
This marks the second straight offseason in which the Cowboys are looking around at kicker. Their 2022 competition imploded during training camp. Both Jonathan Garibay and Lirim Hajrullahu ended up being waived in August, with Maher returning after a camp tryout. Vizcaino, 26, has kicked in 10 games for four different teams — the 49ers, Chargers, Cardinals and Patriots — from 2020-22. The Washington alum is 11-for-12 on field goals but was just 10 of 15 on PATs during his lone extended run — with the 2021 Chargers, who cut him after signing Dustin Hopkins.