Younghoe Koo

Patriots To Sign Younghoe Koo

The Patriots will sign Mike Nugent to serve as their new kicker, but they’re not stopping there. In addition to that move, they’ll also add Younghoe Koo to the practice squad, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets

[RELATED: Patriots Place Stephen Gostkowski on IR]

Koo, 25, appeared in four games for the Chargers in 2017, connecting on three of his six field goal attempts and all nine of his extra point tries. Recently, he had a stint in the Alliance of American Football, before its abrupt ending midway through its inaugural season.

Koo’s struggles with the Bolts are well-documented, but his talent is clear. He did enough in ’17 to beat out Josh Lambo for the top job and the Patriots see enough potential in him to keep him on the ten-man squad.

He’ll be on standby in New England as a safety net for Nugent, who is taking over for Stephen Gostkowski.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Patriots To Work Out Younghoe Koo, Josh Gable

The Patriots will work out more kickers on Thursday, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. They’ll audition free agent Younghoe Koo, plus Josh Gable, who became a viral video sensation for his ludicrous accuracy. 

Gable plied his craft with the IFL’s Nebraska Danger and spent the 2017 rookie minicamp with the Pats. The Patriots liked what they saw from him, but did not have a pressing need for a kicker with the great Stephen Gostkowski handling kicking duties. That all changed this week, when the Patriots learned that Gostkowski was done for the season due to a hip injury.

Koo, meanwhile, has been on the workout circuit and the NFL’s fringes since his rocky start with the Chargers. As the Bolts’ kicker for the first quarter of the 2017 season, he bricked three key field goals that wound up costing them wins in the first two weeks of the season.

On Wednesday, the Pats took a gander at Kai ForbathElliott FryMike NugentBlair Walsh, and Matthew Wright. It seems likely that they’ll reach a consensus and sign a new kicker before the end of business on Thursday. In a couple of days, they’ll travel to take on the Redskins.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Colts Hold Kicker Workout

Despite Adam Vinatieri not opting to retire, the Colts held a kicker audition. The team worked out Cody Parkey, Elliott Fry and Younghoe Koo, Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets. This workout occurred today, after Vinatieri decided not to retire, NFL reporter Howard Balzer tweets. Also part of the audition: Greg Joseph, Chase McLaughlin and Cole Hedlund, per Balzer.

None of these kickers has signed with Indianapolis yet, but the 1-1 team is doing due diligence in light of Vinatieri’s rough start to the season.

Parkey worked out for the Jets recently, but Gang Green went with a Kaare Vedvik waiver claim instead. They now have Sam Ficken at kicker. Parkey has not kicked in a game since his infamous double-doink sequence ended the 2018 Bears’ season, but he has five seasons’ experience.

Koo has also participated in workouts but has not kicked since some late-game misses cost him his Chargers job early in 2017. A South Carolina alum, Fry has yet to kick in an NFL game. Neither has Hedlund, who kicked at Arkansas and North Texas. Joseph served as the Browns’ kicker last season, taking Zane Gonzalez‘s job in September 2018. He did not win Cleveland’s kicking competition this year. McLaughlin did not make the Bills out of camp. He kicked at the University of Illinois from 2015-18.

This is not yet an ominous sign for Vinatieri, but the 46-year-old kicking icon may now be on notice. The future Hall of Famer may be kicking for his job in Week 3.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFL Workout Updates: 9/10/19

We’ve got another busy day of workouts, with many teams across the league hosting players.

Arizona Cardinals

Buffalo Bills

Cleveland Browns

Detroit Lions

Indianapolis Colts

Miami Dolphins

New York Giants

New York Jets

Philadelphia Eagles

Seattle Seahawks

Tennessee Titans

Washington Redskins

Jets To Hold Kicker Tryout

While the Bears this offseason garnered more publicity than just about any kicker-seeking team ever has, the Jets are entering that realm. They are almost certainly set to move to a fourth kicker in less than a month.

The Jets will hold a kicker tryout on Tuesday, as Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports tweets. Sam Ficken, Greg Joseph, Elliott Fry, Younghoe Koo, and Tristan Vizcaino will vie to replace the struggling Kaare Vedvik, according to Manish Mehta of the Daily News.

Adam Gase‘s official word has not yet sealed Vedvik’s fate, but Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News notes the first-year Jets coach was “fuming” regarding the recently acquired kicker on Sunday night (Twitter link). Vedvik missed an extra point and a 45-yard field goal in what became a one-point Jets loss to the Bills. The hybrid specialist is 1-for-5 on field goals since being traded from the Ravens to the Vikings in the second week of the preseason.

Vedvik loomed as a Ravens trade chip for two offseasons, and after spending the 2018 season on Baltimore’s IR list, the Ravens acquired a fifth-round pick for him. The Vikings were set to offer a practice squad spot to Vedvik before the Jets made a waiver claim. The Vikings have another kicker, Chase McLaughlin, on their P-squad.

The Jets opted to let 2018 Pro Bowl kicker Jason Myers defect to the Seahawks in free agency. Replacement Chandler Catanzaro retired in mid-August, and the team added AAF alum Taylor Bertolet. The Vedvik claim sent Bertolet back to the waiver wire. Despite a versatile skill set that stems from extensive punting experience as well, Vedvik looks set to head there again soon.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Jets Audition K Cody Parkey

With Jets kicker Taylor Bertolet struggling during the preseason finale, the team is apparently eyeing some alternative options. Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News tweets that the Jets auditioned a pair of kickers today: Cody Parkey and Younghoe Koo.

Veteran Chandler Catanzaro, retired earlier this month, forcing the Jets to sign a kicker. After auditioning several veterans, the team landed on Bertolet, who was with the Jets last summer. The 26-year-old was shaky throughout the preseason; he missed a pair of extra points during the second game, was perfect in the third, and then missed three field goals during the finale.

Bertolet has shown that he can absolutely boot the ball, but accuracy has continued to be an issue. Still, the kicker is confident in his abilities.

“I’ve been that guy who goes out and makes long kicks,” Bertolet told Andy Vasquez of NorthJersey.com. “And that part of the reason why I think our coaching staff had confidence to put me out there. … It’s usually the kicks that I make, and I’m looking forward to correcting that.”

We haven’t heard from Parkey since he was released by the Bears back in February. The 27-year-old missed a potential game winner against the Eagles in the opening round of the playoffs, putting him on thin ice. He later made an appearance on NBC’s Today show that rubbed head coach Matt Nagy the wrong way. The veteran struggled during the 2018 regular season, connecting on only 76.7-percent of his field goal attempts.

Koo, 25, appeared in four games for the Chargers in 2017, connecting on three of his six field goal attempts and all nine of his extra point tries. He spent last season playing in the Alliance of American Football.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Bears To Workout Pair Of AAF Kickers

Chicago is leaving no stone unturned in their search to replace Cody Parkey. Parkey, of course, struggled all of last season and missed the last-second kick in the playoffs that would’ve sent the Bears through to the second round.

The Bears signed former Tulsa kicker Redford Jones after a group tryout in January, but they aren’t going to just hand the job. Chicago is hosting a pair of kickers just released from their AAF contracts when the league folded, sources told Brad Briggs of The Chicago Tribune. Younghoe Koo and Nick Rose will be brought in for auditions Wednesday.

Briggs adds that it’s “believed they might bring in at least one additional kicker that day,” and Briggs floats fellow AAF alum Elliott Fry as a likely option. Both Koo and Rose have seen regular season action, and both have spent time with the Chargers. Koo entered the 2017 season as Los Angeles’ starting kicker, but was replaced after a few missed clutch kicks early in the season.

Koo is talented though, and he beat out Josh Lambo with the Chargers for a reason. If he can get things sorted out mentally he has the potential to be a serviceable kicker. Rose has spent time with the Redskins and Chargers, and is 11/14 on field goals in his career. Kicker is clearly a priority for the Bears in 2019.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Extra Points: Eric Reid, Browns, Coaches, Seahawks, Workouts

We have a new update on the Eric Reid situation. The Panthers safety has been griping for a while now about the NFL targeting him with incessant drug tests in retaliation for his collusion suit against the league, and the league and NFLPA issued a statement a few days ago saying there was no evidence to support his claims. Reid isn’t dropping the issue however, and his lawyers are rejecting the contents of the letter released by the league, according to Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports.

“They claim that some of the dates the NFL used in its report are incorrect”, and “want access to all evidence, records, electronic messages and information sources used to determine the findings within the report”, La Canfora writes. It’s unclear what his potential next step is, but this probably isn’t the last we’ll hear of it. We also heard a few weeks ago that the Panthers were interested in bringing Reid back in 2019 and had already reached out to his agent about a new deal.

Here’s more from around the league:

  • Freddie Kitchens’ inaugural staff in Cleveland is getting a new member. The Browns are hiring former Jets running backs coach Stump Mitchell, according to Josina Anderson of ESPN (Twitter link). While Anderson writes that “his official title has yet to be finalized”, she does note that he’ll coach the running backs. Mitchell is a longtime running backs coach in the league, who has also spent some time as the head coach of Morgan State and Southern University. Mitchell and Kitchens worked together on Bruce Arians’ staff in Arizona, so the move makes a lot of sense.
  • While the Raiders’ coaching staff isn’t undergoing any major changes for Jon Gruden’s second season, at least one assistant won’t be back in 2019. Assistant defensive line coach Marco Coleman is leaving the team to take a job at Georgia Tech, his alma mater, according to Michael Gehlken of the Las Vegas Review Journal (Twitter link). Gruden’s first season was a disappointment, but there was no big shakeup in response.
  • Before signing kicker Sam Ficken yesterday, the Seahawks worked out a few other kickers. The team brought in Caleb Sturgis, Younghoe Koo, and Lirim Hajrullahua for workouts, according to veteran NFL reporter Howard Balzer (Twitter link). Koo was the Chargers’ kicker to open the 2017 season but was cut after a handful of games, while Sturgis was the Chargers’ kicker the first half of this season before being cut in favor of Michael Badgley. Hajrullahua has been in the CFL the last five years. Seattle’s interest in kickers suggests Sebastian Janikowski, who is a free agent this offseason, won’t be returning in 2019.
  • Speaking of workouts, the Colts brought in tight end Gabe Holmes for a tryout, Balzer tweets. Holmes was signed as an UDFA by the Raiders back in 2015, and has bounced around some bottom of the rosters and practice squads ever since. The Purdue product has spent time with the Raiders, Seahawks, Ravens, and Cardinals. Holmes appeared in eight games with Arizona this year, but was used mostly as a blocker and never caught a pass.

NFL Workout Updates: 11/5/18

Here’s the latest from the workout circuit. All links go to Sirius XM Radio’s Adam Caplan Twitter account, unless otherwise noted.

Cleveland Browns

Cincinnati Bengals

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

Oakland Raiders

Philadelphia Eagles

Extra Points: Harbaugh, Browns, Packers, Chiefs

Earlier today, it was reported that Ravens coach John Harbaugh was on the hot seat. It was reported Harbaugh was under “mounting pressure” to turn his team’s season around, and things didn’t get any better today. The team lost to the Steelers and slipped below .500, but despite the loss Harbaugh wasn’t sweating the media reports after the game.

Harbaugh “certainly didn’t act worried” during his post-game press conference, according to Jamison Hensley of ESPN.com. Harbaugh didn’t sound like he was worried about his job security even though the team dropped its third straight game today. Harbaugh has had a ton of success during his tenure in Baltimore, but things have been rocky the past couple of years and the Ravens reportedly considered parting ways after last season. Despite his defiant tone today, it certainly seems like the 11-year Harbaugh era in Baltimore could be coming to a close. The Ravens are heading into their bye week, so it’s possible we hear news of a switch as early as this week.

Here’s more from around the league:

  • The Browns haven’t been able to get any consistency in the kicking game all season, and worked out a slew of specialists Saturday, according to Adam Schefter of ESPN (Twitter link). Schefter notes that the team worked out kickers “Sam Ficken, Marshall Koehn, Younghoe Koo, Jon Brown and Tyler Rausa.” It wouldn’t be surprising if the team moved on from current kicker Greg Joseph soon.
  • Speaking of specialists, the Packers made the unusual move of adding a second punter earlier this week, and nobody really knew why. There’s more clarity on the situation now, as they only signed Drew Kaser because incumbent punter J.K. Scott’s wife was due to have a baby tonight, according to Rob Demovsky of ESPN.com. It sounds like the team isn’t planning on making a change, and Kaser’s stay on the roster should be short-lived.
  • The Chiefs are clearly a Super Bowl contender and are in win-now mode, so plenty of people were surprised when they didn’t make any moves at the trade deadline to boost their defense. The team had reportedly been interested in trading for Earl Thomas earlier this year, but stood pat at the deadline, and now we know why. The Chiefs did try to trade for Landon Collins close to the deadline but weren’t able to strike a deal, according to Albert Breer of SI.com, who also writes that Kansas City’s coaching staff “has faith” that the team’s group of young defenders will continue to “improve as they go along.”