One of the Cardinals’ free agents-to-be is kicker Chandler Catanzaro. He is restricted, although the Cards probably won’t tender him, hoping to re-sign him for less than the approximately $1.8 million the cheapest tender offer would be. The Cardinals want him, even after struggling last season with 21-of-28 field goals made.
(A quick aside: It’s amazing how far kicking has come. No one disputes that 75 percent on field goals isn’t good enough these days, but before 1980, the NFL leader usually was in the 70-percentile. Climbed to 90 percent for good in 1988. Catanzaro was at 88 and 90 his first two seasons.)
But, assuming Cat Man will be back, “there will be competition,” coach Bruce Arians reiterated.
“There always is,” Arians added, but it “might be a stronger one this year.”
That doesn’t signal to me another undrafted rookie or unknown off the street. That probably means a veteran of some sort, unless there might be a decision to draft one later (Countdown to Zane Gonzalez questions in 3, 2, 1 …). I’d guess the former is more likely, someone that can be picked up later when the rush of initial free agency ends. Catanzaro, assuming he returns, is still the favorite to be the kicker this season. His leash figures to be shorter, though.
“He’s a very talented young guy,” Arians said. “He needs to be pushed.”
Tags: Chandler Catanzaro
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