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Graham gets Punting Job!

camsmith

Juniors
Messages
1,727
HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. (Aug. 27, 2005) -- The New York Jets cut veteran punter Micah Knorr and gave the job to Australian Ben Graham.


Knorr did little to distinguish himself during training camp. In three games, he had seven punts for an average of 41.4 yards. Graham, who decided to give the NFL a try after 12 years in the Australian Football League, had 14 punts for an average of 43.4 yards.

It was clear the 6-foot-5 Graham had the stronger leg. But perhaps the biggest factor is the way he kicks across the ball -- causing it to go end-over-end and then spiral down at returners with a unique backspin. The Giants muffed two of his punts Aug. 26, and the Vikings muffed one last week.

Knorr spent the majority of the 2004 season with the Broncos before being released in December. In his six-year career, Knorr has averaged 41.4 yards a punt.

The Jets also cut running back DeCori Birmingham, tackles Ethan Brooks and Henry Tellis, wide receivers Eddie Jackson and Carl Kearney, and cornerback Art Thomas.

Brooks, a seven-year NFL veteran, has spent time with Atlanta, St. Louis, Arizona and most recently Baltimore.

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Great news, knock 'em dead Ben!
 

Paullyboy

Coach
Messages
10,472
No point, you've got to catch the ball in NFL without fumbling it for 10 minutes for it to count. Maybe at corner back where they could just do one of their 'spoils' and not actually have to catch. They'd need to learn to tackle if they were a corner though. Then again a lot of corners in the NFL are as bad as AFL players at tackling anyway.
 

camsmith

Juniors
Messages
1,727
Take a look at this article and the words in bold -

www.newsday.com/sports/football/jets/ny-spjets0829,0,5485670.story?coll=ny-sports-headlines

Low-key reception for Jets' new punter

By Tom Rock
STAFF WRITER

August 29, 2005


There was no parade, and hardly a slap on the back. That was just the way Ben Graham wanted it. The 31-year-old former star of the Australian Football League won the job as Jets punter over the weekend when his competition, veteran Micah Knorr, was cut. Nothing more had to be said to Graham. "A week ago there were four of us sitting in [special-teams coach Mike Westhoff's] office reviewing the tape," he said yesterday. "This morning there were two. That's it." Graham, who was brought in as a Barnum-esque curiosity and won the job with booming 70-yard kicks that hardly anyone could catch cleanly, will be one of the NFL's oldest rookies. The other spotlight special-teamers for the Jets this season -- the ones who will do the kicking and the running, the footwork of football -- are mostly first-year players like Graham, but they're almost a decade younger. Kicker Mike Nugent was drafted out of Ohio State in the second round and Justin Miller, a cornerback out of Clemson, will return kickoffs and punts. "Maybe we can relate to each other because we all are rookies and with a team for the first time," Nugent said. Graham has been kicking all his life. This year he'll be holding as well, setting the ball for Nugent on field goals and extra points. It was something Graham said he'd never done before, but the good hands he used in the AFL might come in handy in the NFL. (Nugent said it's been nice to mold a holder to his own specifications rather than adapt to someone who has been doing it for years.) And don't be surprised if Graham's athleticism gives coaches some ideas for fake kicks or gimmicks.Coach Herman Edwards said he might use the 6-5, 230-pound Graham as a receiver on Hail Mary plays, as jumping up and catching the ball is a common skill in Australia. "This guy is a punter," Edwards said, "but he's an athlete by trade." As for the possibility of banging with NFL players, Graham is looking forward to it. "I'm sure there'll be times I'll get an opportunity to get amongst it," he said. Edwards said what he likes most about Graham is that receivers struggle to catch his left-footed, end-over-end kicks. "We kind of laugh at our guys -- they see it every day and they can't catch it," Edwards said. "And our guys are tickled to death on the sideline when he starts punting in games. They're almost betting money that they won't be able to handle it." While Graham and Nugent have won their jobs with performance, Miller hasn't been stellar enough to erase doubts. He'll return some punts, but he's shown wobbly hands, and the Jets won't trust him when they are backed up deep in their own territory. Justin McCareins, a fifth-year veteran, will handle those delicate duties. When the season opens in Kansas City on Sept. 11, the chances are pretty good that a rookie will be the first Jet to touch the football. It could be Nugent kicking off. Or it could be Miller returning. Heads or tails, kick or receive, inexperience will be on display.



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Probably nothing much in it, but wouldnt it be cool if he came in at the end of the game and caught a hail mary to win the game! lol.
 

Paullyboy

Coach
Messages
10,472
That would be hilarious to see a punter being brought out for a 5 receiver set.

It would show up all the other pathetic excuse for players that are commonly referred to as punters.
 

J-Man

Juniors
Messages
160
I remember seeing Darren Bennett flatten a punt returner once, it was hilarious. The guy thought he could just go right over the top of Bennett, but he got smashed and laughed at by his teammates.

Bennett also almost ripped Ray Buchannan's head off once on a return.
 
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