Zane Gonzalez

Panthers Re-Sign K Zane Gonzalez

The Panthers have re-signed Zane Gonzalez, per a club announcement. The kicker’s two-year deal will pay $4.5MM, according to’s Ian Rapoport (Twitter link).

[RELATED: Latest On Panthers, Paradis]

Gonzalez began the year on the Lions practice squad before coming to Carolina in September of 2021. Replacing the likes of Joey Slye and Ryan Santoso, Gonzalez got hot in October, nailing 17 straight field goal tries. He wound up going 20-for-22 for the season, up until he was placed on injured reserve in December with a quad injury. Gonzalez also connected on 22 of his 23 extra point tries.

The Panthers temporarily turned to Lirim Hajrullahu after the injury, but they wanted Gonzalez back for 2022. Even in the midst of larger decisions – including the status of center Matt Paradis — the Panthers were said to be eyeing a new deal for their young kicker. Gonzalez, 27 in May, will return and look to improve upon his career 80.5% field goal rate.

Panthers Expected To Let Matt Paradis Depart In Free Agency; Latest On FA Plans

As Joseph Person of The Athletic (subscription required) writes, the Panthers are likely to part ways with center Matt Paradis, who is eligible for free agency. Pat Elflein, who opened the 2021 season as Carolina’s left guard but who moved over to center following Paradis’ injury, is likely to continue as the starting pivot despite his struggles in that role.

Paradis, 32, signed a three-year, $27MM contract with the Panthers in March 2019, and he started every game for the club from Week 1 of the 2019 season through Week 9 of the 2021 campaign. Unfortunately, a torn ACL suffered in that Week 9 contest ended his walk year prematurely, and it leaves him in a less-than-desirable position as he hits the open market for the second time in his career (interestingly, when he hooked on with the Panthers in 2019, he was coming off a serious leg injury that he sustained in November 2018, which may have limited his earnings then in the same way that his recent ACL tear will limit his earnings now).

Still, given his track record as a solid starter and the fact that he has been quite durable except when he’s playing out a contract year, he should garner a fair amount of attention from teams in need of a center. The Bengals, Jets, and Jaguars are all rumored to be interested in Bucs center Ryan Jensen, and Tampa Bay wants to retain its four-year starter. The losers of the Jensen sweepstakes could turn to Paradis, and the Ravens, who may be unable to afford a new contract for Bradley Bozeman, could also be in play.

The Panthers, meanwhile, will have plenty of work to do on the O-line. Luckily for them, this year’s college class is deep at the LT position, and Carolina could net a high-quality prospect even if it trades down from its No. 6 overall selection. In a separate piece (subscription required), Person opines that the Panthers will not be in the market for a high-priced free agent like longtime division-rival Terron Armstead, so the draft would be the place to nab a blindside blocker. Person does expect the team to sign a free agent guard, and while Brandon Scherff and Laken Tomlinson may be too pricey, old friend Andrew Norwell or Bears OL James Daniels could be viable targets.

In related news, Person says the Panthers do want edge defender Haason Reddick back, but only if the price is right. We recently heard that Reddick is likely to test the open market for the second year in a row. And while the club has not shut the door on a new contract for CB Stephon Gilmore, Person hears that the team is prioritizing a deal with fellow corner Donte Jackson, who is five years younger than Gilmore (both players are also eligible for free agency). GM Scott Fitterer is also doing his due diligence on available safeties.

Finally, the Panthers reportedly want to re-sign K Zane Gonzalez and may be eyeing P Pat O’Donnell as a replacement for Lachlan Edwards.

Panthers Place K Zane Gonzalez On IR

Zane Gonzalez‘s season has come to an end. The Panthers announced today that they placed the veteran kicker on injured reserve. The IR stint will force Gonzalez to miss at least three games, and with only three games remaining on the schedule, his season has effectively come to an end.

The 26-year-old was signed off the Lions practice squad in September, replacing the likes of Joey Slye and Ryan Santoso. Gonzalez missed a field goal in Week 4, but he’s since made 17-straight, making him 20-for-22 for the season. The veteran also connected on 22 of his 23 extra point tries. Gonzalez will be a free agent this offseason.

Gonzalez suffered a quad injury prior to Sunday’s win over the Bills. Wideout Brandon Zylstra was forced to handle kickoffs, while the team generally went for fourth downs and two-point conversations without a healthy kicker.

The Panthers will temporarily turn to Lirim Hajrullahu, who was signed off the Washington Football Team practice squad today. The 31-year-old made his NFL debut earlier this season. connecting on five extra point tries for the Cowboys. Carolina also added kicker Alex Kessman to the practice squad.


Panthers Cut K Ryan Santoso, Sign K Zane Gonzalez

The Panthers have made their decision. Carolina is cutting kicker Ryan Santoso after just one game, a source told Joe Person of The Athletic (Twitter link). The team then announced they would be signing kicker Zane Gonzalez off the Lions’ practice squad to replace him.

It was a move that was time sensitive because of the Panthers’ trade for Santoso a few weeks ago. Carolina agreed to acquire Santoso from the Giants, and the deal stipulated that they’d send a seventh-round pick to New York if Santoso was on the active roster for two games. Essentially, they had a one week free trial on the kicker, and decided he wasn’t worth the late-round pick.

Santoso made both of his field goal attempts in the team’s Week 1 win over the Jets, but he did miss one of his two extra point attempts. The Panthers cut Joey Slye at final cuts, and they also have Dominik Eberle on the practice squad. Gonzalez was the Browns’ kicker in all 16 games in 2017, and he spent most of the past two seasons as the Cardinals’ full-time kicker. Because he was signed off another team’s practice squad, Carolina will need to keep him on the active roster for at least three weeks.

The Giants will now get nothing in return for the man they had behind Graham Gano during the preseason. Teams apparently thought highly enough of Santoso, who has spent some time in the CFL, to warrant a trade for him, so it wouldn’t be surprising if he gets another shot with somebody soon.

Wednesday NFL Transactions: NFC North

Following the 53-man roster cutdown deadline Tuesday, many teams will make slight tweaks to their rosters. In addition to waiver claims, teams can begin constructing their 16-man practice squads today. These BearsLionsPackers and Vikings moves are noted below.

Here are Wednesday’s NFC North transactions, which will continue to be updated throughout the day.

Chicago Bears




Placed on IR:

Signed to practice squad:

Detroit Lions


Signed to practice squad:

Green Bay Packers

Signed to practice squad:

Minnesota Vikings



Placed on IR:

Signed to practice squad:

Lions Down To 53

The Lions have their 53-man roster in place. On Tuesday, the Lions officially cut:



Placed on Reserve/Suspended

The Lions will carry three quarterbacks for now in Jard Goff, Tim Boyle, and David Blough. Boyle is currently dealing with an injured thumb, which will keep him sidelined for two months. But, in order to hang on to him and dress him ASAP, they’ll have to carry him on their initial 53-man roster. Fortunately, Goff has proven largely durable during his five-year career. He did not miss a start due to injury until late last season, when a thumb surgery sidelined him.

Lions Sign K Zane Gonzalez

After losing longtime kicker Matt Prater to the Cardinals in free agency, the Lions have added Arizona’s previous kicker. Zane Gonzalez agreed to a one-year deal with the Lions on Tuesday, according to his agency (Twitter link).

Detroit used Prater as its kicker from 2014-20, but he left for Arizona in March. The Lions signed former Bengals specialist Randy Bullock, but they have now added some veteran competition.

Gonzalez, 26, kicked for the Cardinals from 2018-20, catching on in the desert after the Browns cut him early in the 2018 season. The former seventh-round Browns pick fared well in 2019, making more than 86% of his field goal tries. Last season, Gonzalez was less effective (73%) and played a role in the Cards’ late-season swoon. He missed a 45-yard field goal in a three-point loss to the Patriots and saw another game-tying try — a 49-yarder — fall short of the uprights in a three-point loss to the Dolphins.

Bullock, 31, is a nine-year veteran who spent the past four years as the Bengals’ kicker. To make room for Gonzalez on their roster, the Lions are waiving kicker Matthew Wright, per’s Tom Pelissero (on Twitter).

Minor NFL Transactions: 3/5/21

We’ll keep track of the latest minor moves here:

Arizona Cardinals

Los Angeles Chargers

Pittsburgh Steelers

San Francisco 49ers

Tennessee Titans

Cardinals Move Gonzalez, Phillips To IR

Mike Nugent looks set to continue as Arizona’s kicker for the foreseeable future. The Cardinals placed Zane Gonzalez on IR on Saturday and promoted Nugent from their practice squad.

The Cardinals gave Nugent a chance to kick in a 16th NFL season last week, calling on him to replace an injured Gonzalez. With Saturday’s transaction sidelining Gonzalez for the rest of the regular season, the 38-year-old Nugent will receive more opportunities to help the Cards into the playoffs for the first time in five years.

Gonzalez has struggled this season, having seen a game-tying field goal from inside 50 yards fall short against the Dolphins and having missed five other field goals (16-for-22) in his third Cardinals campaign. The former Browns kicker, down because of a back injury, will be eligible to return for Arizona’s playoff game — should the Cards qualify. Nugent made 4 of 4 field goals in the Cards’ win over the Giants last week.

Joining Gonzalez on IR for the next three weeks: Jordan Phillips. The pricey free agent acquisition will head to IR for the second time this season. Because this is Phillips’ second time on IR, his season is over.

Phillips has dealt with a balky hamstring this season. He returned from IR last week to play against the Giants, but a setback will sideline a key Cards defender for the team’s most critical stretch of games in years. The Cardinals now have D-linemen Phillips, Corey Peters and Josh Mauro on IR.

Arizona also activated tight end Darrell Daniels off IR and promoted running back D.J. Foster and linebacker Terrance Smith.

Cardinals Activate DL Jordan Phillips, Promote K Mike Nugent

The Cardinals announced a list of transactions this afternoon, including the activation of defensive lineman Jordan Phillips from injured reserve. The team also activated cornerback Kevin Peterson from IR, placed cornerback Johnathan Joseph on IR, released defensive lineman Trevon Coley, and promoted tight end Seth DeValve and kicker Mike Nugent from the practice squad.

Following a 9.5-sack campaign with the Bills in 2019, Phillips got a three-year deal from Arizona this offseason. While he started eight games for the Cardinals, his production took a dip, as he had only 10 tackles and a pair of sacks through the first two-plus months of the season. With his playing time already diminished, Phillips landed on injured reserve back in November with a hamstring injury.

Joseph, 36, was released by the Titans back in November. He quickly caught on with the Cardinals, and he’s collected three tackles and one pass defended through four games. The veteran hadn’t appeared in more than 20 percent of his team’s defensive snaps in any of his four games, and he was added to the injury report this week with a neck ailment. Peterson, 26, will be taking Joseph’s spot on the roster, with the Oklahoma State product having appeared in 22 games for the Cardinals over the past two seasons.

With starting kicker Zane Gonzalez ruled out for tomorrow’s game against the Giants with a back injury, Arizona is turning to Nugent. The 38-year-old joined the Cardinals practice squad back in September, and with Gonzalez connecting on only 72.7 percent of his field goals this season, Nugent could be auditioning for the full-time gig. Nugent got into four games with the Patriots last season, connecting on five of his eight field goal attempts and 15 of his 16 extra point tries.

DeValve, a 2016 fourth-round pick, joined the Cardinals practice squad last month and was promoted to the active roster last week. In 54 career games (16 starts), DeValve’s hauled in 60 receptions for 736 yards and four touchdowns. Coley, 26, started 29 games for the Browns between the 2017 and 2018 seasons. He’s appeared in 13 games since that time, compiling 20 tackles and one sack.