K Wil Lutz – 8aa
P Grant Shaw – 7a
Summary: Wil Lutz was a second round pick in this fall’s draft. Certainly the Firebirds invested a lot in him, but he’s hit everything in camp. Grant Shaw is a CFL addition who will take over as the team’s punter.
P Burke Dales – 7
K Jordan Gay – 7
Summary: Burke Dales still can boot a long punt, but he’s as good as he’ll be, but certainly the Predators could have done worst than getting the Nashville veteran. Jordan Gay has had a career as a kickoff specialist, but has no pro history taking field goals.
K Tommy Frevert – 6a
P Dave Zastudil – 10
Summary: Dave Zastudil is the best punter in the league hands down, still with a great boot on him and pin-point accuracy on those corner pooches. Tommy Frevert is serviceable at best as the team’s kicker.
K Josh Lambo – 9a
P Rob Maver – 8
Summary: Josh Lambo had a very strong rookie season and looks like he’s even better I camp this year. He just seems more confident kicking the ball. Rob Maver is a steady veteran punter.
K/P Swayze Waters – K (9a) — P (9a)
Summary: Swayze Waters is one of the best in the league at both kicking and punting and that dual ability gives Columbus a big advantage with an extra roster spot.
K Billy Cundiff – 7
Summary: The long-time NFL journeyman is back in pro football at 36-years-old after a year away from the game. He’s reliable, but has never been overly accurate. With his age, his kickoff power probably will start to fade a bit.
P Christian Brinser – 7a
K Josiah Yazdani – 7aa
Summary: Josiah Yazdani was a nice surprise last year and was perfect on extra points and only missed four field goals. We’ll see if he was legit this year, but he looks like he can be a solid kicker again. Brinser’s overall numbers may have been helped by volume, which is a bad things for the Cougars. He’s a solid middle of the road punter, though. There are worse guys.
K/P Anthony Fera – K (6a) – P (6a)
K/P Lirim Hajrullahu – K (7a) – P (7a)
K Blair Walsh – 10
Summary: Anthony Fera is still relatively untested as a kicker and punter after two years in the CFL but we’ll see what he can do in Houston, but only if he can beat out a more proven CFL veteran Lirim Hajrullahu. Blair Walsh is going to be the kicker though. He’s one of the very best around and has been for quite some time.
Los Angeles Stars
P Chris Milo – (6a)
P Tom Hackett – (6a)
K Greg Zuerlein – (9a)
Summary: Greg ‘The Leg’ Zuerlein certainly had a very disappointing 2016 season, but history shows that was simply an off year for him. He’s one of the very best in the game and we expect a bounce-back season. He’ll need a bounce-back year too because if he can’t hit from range the Stars punters won’t do them a ton of good. Chris Milo only averaged 31.6 yards per punt last year. Tom Hackett is an unproven guy who we’ll have to see what he can do.
P Riley Dixon – 8aa
K Alex Henery – 9a
Summary: Michigan has a great specialists duo. Alex Henery had a very successful 2016 season, making 24-of-28 field goals and a league-best four from beyond 50 yards. Riley Dixon is a rookie, but has booted everything down the field a long way in camp.
K/P Rene Paredes – K (8) – P (6aa)
Summary: We don’t know what Rene Paredes can do as a punter, but we know he’s been a more than good kicker throughout his career. If he can punt too, then Minnesota has a hit with a dual-threat specialist.
P Lachlan Edwards – 8aa
K Sam Ficken – 7aa
Summary: Lachlan Edwards has had an incredible camp and is booting the ball all over the field in camp. Sam Ficken hasn’t been anything special, though. He’ll have to prove himself early in those exhibition games or the Renegades might go another direction.
New Orleans Nightmare
P Tom Hornsey – 9a
K Mike Nugent –
Summary: Tom Hornsey has proven himself as one of the best punters in the league but the Nightmare have brought in 34-year-old NFL veteran Mike Nugent to take over as the team’s kicker. He’s only a short-term solution but should be a very reliable kicker for them.
New York Marauders
K/P Sean Whyte – K (9a) – P (8a)
Summary: Sean Whyte has been really good for New York ever since he came into town. Whyte has been nearly perfect as a kicker and has been very, very consistent as a punter, which helps the Marauders open up an extra roster spot to use elsewhere.
K/P Brett Maher – K (7a) – P (8a)
Summary: Brett Maher has a big leg, whether that is on kickoffs, punting the ball or trying to pick long field goals. The problem is he has been fairly inconsistent when he’s taking field goals. If he has more success kicking he can be one of the league’s very best, but he’ll have to prove it before he gets rated that way.
K Justin Medlock – 10
P Matt Darr – 10
Summary: Justin Medlock is the best kicker in this year and easily the most accurate. He’s a clutch performer and last year went 25-for-27 with eight made from 40 yards or longer and two from 50 yards or farther. Matt Darr is just as great as a punter. He was second in the league last year with a 47.4 yards per punt average, with 27 of his 61 punts landing inside the 20 yard line.
K Andrew Franks – 9a
P/K Ricky Schmitt –
Summary: Andrew Franks has a big leg and last year he showed big improvement on his accuracy. He led the league in kicking 40-yard field goals and with an improved Philadelphia team we expect him to have more attempts from closer range. Ricky Schmitt is getting older, but is still a very reliable kicker.
K Ryan Hawkins – 6a
K/P Richie Leone – K (8a) – P (10)
Summary: There is nothing wrong with a little bit of competition. The Scorpions brought in a local kid names Ryan Hawkins, who happened to have had one of the most accurate kicking seasons in Division I FCS history, but Richie Leone is as good as they come. He was a midseason addition for the Scorpions and finished with six touchbacks in half a season, 12 punts inside the 20 and the second-highest punting average with 48.3 yards per punt. And his dual-threat specialists ability wasn’t one-sided. He made 14-of-17 field goals, including six from beyond 40 yards and one from 50 yards.
K Ross Martin – 7aa
P Will Monday – 6a
Summary: The Forge brought in two Duke rookies to take over specialists duties. Ross Martin holds just about every single record for the Blue Devils, but both he and Monday will need to prove themselves.
San Antonio Marshalls
P Ryan Allen – 8a
K Nich Pertuitt –
Summary: Nich Pertuitt is getting older, but still, he’s a very steady kicker who converted 85.2-percent of the field goals last season. He’s solid from inside 50, but doesn’t have tremendous range on his kicks. Ryan Allen is trending up and was was one of the best in the league in getting the ball inside the 20. Nearly 40-percent of his punts put the opposing team inside the 20.
K/P Boris Bede – K (6) – P (8a)
K Brad Craddock – 6aa
Summary: Brad Craddock was one of the most accurate kickers in college football history. The Aussie Terp will be a welcome addition in Seattle and will help especially considering he’ll allow Boris Bede to focus only on punting. Bede is a very good punter but was only good on two-thirds of his field goal attempts last year. He had the lowest field goal percentage in the league last year.
P Josh Bartel – 8
K Tyler Crapigna – 7a
Summary: Tyler Crapinga was kay last year, but he should be getting better kicking opportunities this year with the Wave being so improved. Josh Bartel replaces the long-time pro punter Adam Podlesh and should be a steady CFL addition.