Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

27 Sep 2005

King: Vinatieri Heading to Canton?

Peter King says barring a late-career slide, Adam Vinatieri will get his Hall of Fame vote "because he makes kicks in the clutch and because nothing makes him sweat." Vinatieri is probably the second-best kicker of his generation, after David Akers. Is that good enough to get him into the Hall?

King also writes that Kerry Collins "has been a weak spot in the Raiders' 0-3 start." Sorry, Peter. Even if you don't realize he's leading the league in PAR, you've got to understand that 7.5 yards a throw, six touchdowns and no interceptions is hardly a weak spot.

Posted by: Michael David Smith on 27 Sep 2005

92 comments, Last at 14 Oct 2005, 4:14am by ryan

Comments

1
by B (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 5:26pm

If the second best QB/RB of a generation can make the Hall, why not the second best kicker? Of course, Akers should be in the hall too, but if he doesn't, that's not a legitimate reason to keep Vinatieri out.

2
by Aaron (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 5:35pm

I'm the leading Akers cheerleader, but let's be honest: Being in the Hall of Fame isn't just about being the best in the regular season. You get extra points for playing well in the playoffs. You get extra extra points for becoming a legend. If Vinatieri doesn't make the Hall, they should just announce that kicker doesn't count as a position. I like Akers, but given how rare it is for a kicker to make the HOF, he won't even sniff it unless he can come back from this injury and either a) have the longevity of Morten Andersen or b) make at least one memorable game-winning kick in the playoffs. And even though I think he's great, I don't have a problem with that.

3
by Vince (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 5:37pm

I like Peter King, but this column was tripe. I gave up when he failed to correct the reader who said that Randy Moss used to harp on his quarterback Jeff Garcia when they played together.

4
by Tarrant (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 5:37pm

If you asked most of the voters "You have to choose one: Vinatieri or Akers" I'm going to guess most will take Vinatieri for the Hall.

Akers has been the better overall kicker this generation, but few kickers of the past few years have had as many meaningful and clutch kicks as Vinatieri, and I think they will put him in the hall before they'd put Akers. Kickers are supposed to make kicks, and the history of the Hall has shown that simply being a really, really, really good kicker is not enough.

One has to be almost transcendent. Vinatieri almost has a legend surrounding him, with how many playoff and Super Bowl clutch kicks he's made, and I think that will matter more, come Hall voting time, than the stats showing that someone else was a more consistent and deserving kicker over the years.

T.

5
by MDS (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 5:40pm

Is Matt Light a Hall of Famer? I think he has had more to do with the Patriots' three championships than Vinatieri.

6
by Jeremy (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 5:51pm

There is something to be said for a 45-yard FG in a significant snowstorm to keep your team's season alive.

7
by Richard (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 5:56pm

Egads ... haven't even read the article yet, so I'll keep this comment general: I don't see how anybody can watch the first three Raider games and think that Kerry Collins is a weak spot. I suppose you could conclude that if you were comparing Collins to some abstract, arbitrarily high standard you have for quarterback play (and ignoring the league-wide level of quarterback play). Maybe, in some utopian world where all quarterbacks have the release of Marino, the arm strength of Cunningham to go with the recognition of Montana and the running ability of Young, Collins' performance in the first three weeks is subpar.

Watching the first three games, there are clearly bigger problems or the Raiders. They're killing themselves with penalties, but against Philadelphia I thought their biggest problems were a.) an offensive line with a complete inability to run block, b.) a head coach with an inability to recognize this and adjust accordingly, and c.) Sebastian Janikowski.

After his first ten carries, there was no reason to hand Lamont Jordan ball. The Eagle defensive line was manhandling the Raider offensive line, leaving the Philly linebackers to just tee off on Jordan. At the same time, the Raiders were consistently able to throw the ball to Jordan and Anderson, moving at will when their will was sufficient. The Philly secondary did a good job on Moss and Porter but appeared spread too thin to account for the running back and tight end.

Unfortunately, the Raiders did not adjust their game plan.

8
by Jason (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 5:56pm

Re: #5 and Matt Light.

Then you are sorely misguided. Look, I love Matt Light. I do. But he's gone for a long while now. And as a die-hard, longtime Pats fan, I can assure you I am not worried one bit. The o-line will be fine. Why? Because it has been for so long with these lunch-pail guys, why should I believe anything will change? We've had the likes of Greg Robinson-Randall, Tom Ashworth, Russ Hochstein, etc. around for so long, and they just keep playing well. Dante Scarnecchia must be a genius.

All that being said, we don't win SB 36 or 38 with an average kicker, IMO. Just ask the Jets and Chargers about their feelings from last year's playoffs. Adamatic is a huge key.
J

9
by ABW (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 5:59pm

The 6th best question that they could get out of all the reader's emails was "What happened to David Boston?" That's a question that anyone with access to the Web should be able to answer themselves in under a minute, and they'd get more information than King gave. Maybe there was a word limit or something, but come on, this is the Web. It's not like you're running out of pages to put stuff on.

10
by mactbone (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 5:59pm

Wait, Vinatieri gets extra points for being on a team that has made it to the Super Bowl and happened to keep the game close until the end? It's not like Akers would shank those kicks - his team hasn't gotten him into those positions. This whole "clutch" factor is so overrated it isn't even funny. Comebacks! - are created by players not good enough to get it done in the first 58 minutes.

Morten Andersen should be a lock but the only person I've seen mention him is Zimmerman. Even Gary Anderson should have a better chance than Vinatieri.

11
by Andrew (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:01pm

"I like Akers, but given how rare it is for a kicker to make the HOF, he won’t even sniff it unless he can come back from this injury and either a) have the longevity of Morten Andersen or b) make at least one memorable game-winning kick in the playoffs."

Eagles-Green Bay, 2003 season - 2 clutch kicks in one game.

Of course, it is hard to develop a "clutch" reputation when your team is ordinarily good enough to win by 10+ points in almost all games.

Vinatieri is "clutch" because without him, New England would have lost a ton of close games.

12
by MDS (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:02pm

Hey, Jason: Do you know who else is sorely misguided? Bill Belichick. That's who decided to pay Matt Light $9 million in guarantees on his new contract. He's never offered Vinatieri anything close to that. If you say I'm wrong, fine, but acknowledge that Belichick and I are wrong together on this one. (I'm sure he eagerly awaits hearing your other personnel suggestions.)

13
by Richard (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:02pm

I think the Light-argument(?) is a little off track.

Vinateri compared to other kickers is so far above the curve that he merits HoF discussion.

Can the same be said for Light and tackles?

I think I see the argument that a good tackle might be more valable than a great kicker.

I also see that argument as being distinct from disussion HoF kickers' credentials.

14
by Richard (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:04pm

MDS: Didn't the Patriots franchise tag AV?

15
by CaffeineMan (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:09pm

Is Matt Light a Hall of Famer? I think he has had more to do with the Patriots’ three championships than Vinatieri.

Hmm. As a Pats fan, I love Matt Light and was extremely glad they signed him to a long-term contract, but this is a bit extreme. I do think you pay the kicker for those moments when all the pressure of an entire season is on his leg and it's hard to measure that against steady, game-in, game-out performance.

16
by MDS (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:17pm

Yep, Vinatieri got the franchise tender. That's a lot less money than Light got.

17
by ABW (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:19pm

Re: 8

Um, what? I'm not going to try to make as sweeping a claim as MDS, but Light started 12 games in 2001 and every game since then, and has been the best and most consistent lineman on the Pats. If there is a reason to not be worried, it's because Nick Kaczur was apparently a steal in the 3rd round(thanks Pioli and Belichick), not Dante Scarnecchia. Even he wouldn't be able to turn Brandon Gorin into a starting left tackle.

Re Viantieri, it's the cheerleader factor. What do cheerleaders like(and/or remember), Super Bowl winning kicks or consistency on long FGs and distance on kickoffs? Now remember that most of the HOF voters are sportswriters...not much smarter or more football acumen than the sirens of the sidelines. Present company excluded of course.

18
by CaffeineMan (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:19pm

And yes, I know Vinatieri has the advantage of more opportunities compared to Akers. I don't know how to adjust for that, so I don't think you should. Since it's a team game, it's really hard to avoid the phenomenon of some players getting the spotlight on great teams more than some other possibly better players on lesser teams. You certainly CANNOT say for sure if Akers hits or misses those kicks. That's sheer speculation. If you want to argue Akers, then argue on a different basis (consistency, kickoff performance, whatever). But the "Vinatieri doesn't make the hall because Akers would have made those kicks too" isnt' a good argument, in my opinion.

19
by Richard (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:22pm

Re: Franchise Tag

Certainly. However, if we're going to use contract circumstances as an indication of Belichek's evaluation of a player (see #12), it's only fair to say that the Pats thought Vinatieri's contribution so critical (or the franchise-tag tender such a good deal) that they chose to use that resource on Vinatieri.

What's the tell us?

Nothing much. There are a lot of details involved, as I would assume there are a lot of details involved with Light's situation. The franchise tag, an individual post-season's market, positional value, etc., etc.

My point is that a similar argument as giving in #12 can be made for Vinatieri.

20
by B (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:23pm

Saying Vinatieri shouldn't be in the Hall because Akers is a better kicker is like saying Emmit shouldn't be in the hall because Barry is better.

21
by ElJefe (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:25pm

I have to agree with what appears to be the growing sentiment in this thread:

The primary argument for Vinatieri being a HOF player is that the team he was on was good enough to win 3 Super Bowls, but not good enough to win any of them by more than 3 points. Would he have as strong a case if he played for the mid-90s Cowboys? Probably not, because those teams won Super Bowls by big margins.

And let's not forget he had the chance to kick the game-winning FG against the Panthers because he shanked a couple earlier in the game. If he makes those two there's no drama at the end and his HOF cause is perversely hindered by his success.

If the argument is all about "clutch kicks", on which of his kicks was a miss a loss? The two Super Bowl kicks were with the score tied, but I can't remember the one against Oakland. I just feel that kicks where it's "miss and get another shot in overtime" are a lot less nerve-racking than "miss and I make the world forget the name Scott Norwood".

Mariano Rivera will be in the HoF because of his post-season performance. Would he still make it if he played his entire career in Pittsburgh? Probably not. (Only 3 relief pitchers are in the Hall.) It's not that simple in football, I suspect Vinatieri will benefit from a sentiment that a team that wins 3 Super Bowls in 4 years has to have a few players in the HoF, and there aren't a whole lot of other candidates on the Pats besides Brady and possible Richard Seymour. (With all due respect to Rodney Harrison ... please don't kill me, Rodney. )

By the time the vote comes up, I wouldn't be surprised if a fair portion of the electorate assume he made a game-winning kick in SB 39 (hey, the final margin was 3 points .... )

22
by MJK (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:33pm

How many OL in general make the hall? The fact is, neither kickers nor lineman typically make the hall, because hall voters typically look for the "sexier" positions. But there is personal glory associated with being the kicker, and not with being a tackle, so I think, regardless of who is actually more vital to the team's success, the kicker will always get into the hall ahead of the tackle. Sad but true.

Incidentally, as a somewhat longtime NE fan I especially appreciate Adam. For anyone who thinks kicker quality is not important, I have two words--Mike Sisson. Remember him?

23
by Led (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:35pm

Wow, B, there's so many ways to go with your comment. Do you mean both Akers and Vinatieri (like Emmitt and Barry) should be in the HOF? Are you saying Akers is clearly better just like Barry was clearly better? Are you being ironic and therefore saying that Vinatieri is clearly better just like Emmitt was clearly better? Or, are you saying the debate, like the debate about Emmitt and Barry, can't be resolved and will devolve into a shouting between partisans?

Or are you just trying to sound like Larry King!

24
by Oswlek (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:36pm

MDS,

I'm surprised by your posts on this issue because I have (possibly incorrectly?) come to see you as being more rational. Vinatieri, whether you think he is a HOFer or not has been the highest paid kicker for three years running. He doesn't make what Light makes because he shouldn't. LT's are inherantly more valuable than kickers for right handed QB's.

By no means is Light anywhere near a LT as AV is a kicker. It really isn't close.

BTW, the world is full of people who could have been great if they were placed in a different circumstance. That really isn't all that relevent. What is relevent is how well someone performs if they are given the chance.

25
by zip (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:36pm

I think Vinatieri is more likely to make the Hall of Fame than Akers. He is more famous for making two kicks that won Super Bowls, and I think fame greatly influences getting into the Hall of.. fame. Which is why you see so few linemen.

It seems like people who have a problem with this aren't taking the name "Hall of Fame" at face value. If it were call "Hall of Acheivement" I would say Vinatieri is less deserving. But if it's about fame, he's probably the most famous kicker of this decade so far.

26
by MDS (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:36pm

"the kicker will always get into the hall ahead of the tackle."

The Pro Football Hall of Fame has 31 modern-era offensive linemen, 27 modern-era defensive linemen, 16 two-way linemen, and one kicker.

27
by Oswlek (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:39pm

"I just feel that kicks where it’s 'miss and get another shot in overtime' are a lot less nerve-racking than 'miss and I make the world forget the name Scott Norwood'".

I agree. But the Oakland kick was 45 yards in a blizzard down by three in clearly the last chance the team would have to tie.

Possibly the best kick of all time considering all the factors.

28
by MDS (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:41pm

Oswlek, you're wrong. Vinatieri has not been the highest paid kicker in the league for three years running.

Other than that, I agree with every word of your post. Why do you see any contradiction between your comments and mine?

29
by Tarrant (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:41pm

It may not necessarily be fair but it's reality that a player's odds of making the Hall of Fame (or winning MVP, or what have you) are going to depend on the game and team circumstances around him.

Would Matt Leinart have gotten anywhere near the Heisman had USC not done well last year? No. Would Manning have his NFL MVP if he had played for the Cardinals? Probably not. Would Phil Jackson be a 9-time championship coach if he coached the Hornets? Not for a moment.

But those things did happen and thus those people were recognized.

Likewise, unfair as it may be, Vinatieri is a probable Hall of Famer because his kicks have meant more to his team at key moments than Akers' have to his. A kicker isn't going to make the Hall by being consistently good, and Akers is scary good. But there are lots of good kickers in NFL history, and they aren't in the Hall of Fame. A kicker would have to have a total mystique about them, like Mariano Rivera does in baseball (great example). Something where, over and over, the entire hope of their franchise is riding on their kick, and they come through every time, like Rivera closing in baseball.

When Rivera comes out, even non-Yankee fans feel like the game is over - even though he's blown key games before, even blown Game 7 of the World Series before, he still has that aura. Likewise, Vinatieri has gained such an aura from the two clutch "Tuck Rule Game" kicks, from the Super Bowls, and such, that everyone feels that when he takes the field, you may as well be packing up.

He may as well have theme music that plays when he takes the field or something. Not to mention (as brought up previously) that the Patriots valued him to the point of giving him - a kicker! - the franchise tag, and guaranteeing his salary.

Akers is a great kicker, but he isn't a Hall of Fame kicker.

T.

30
by zip (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:43pm

Also, Moss berating Garcia? Are you kidding me? How dumb are people? How do you confuse the two most well known receivers in the sport you follow (the guy who wrote in) or the sport you WRITE ABOUT (PK) or the sport you EDIT ARTICLES FOR (SI)???

I try to stay off the journalist criticism around here, but that's just a terrible error.

31
by B (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:46pm

Led: I just want to sound like Larry King! Well, that and I think they should both be in the Hall. It's a shame that there is only one kicker in the HoF. My point is being the second best player in a position in a generation is good enough for a running back, and it should be good enough for a kicker, too.

32
by Oswlek (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:53pm

MDS,

He hasn't been? I would have sworn he was. I remember all the talk about how AV would get 125% of his salary when franchised due to his salary being the highest of all kickers.

Unless everything I read was wrong he certainly was in 2004 and is in 2005.

I apologize for misunderstanding, but when you said Light was more responsible for the Pats' success I thought that was somehow a derogatory comment towards AV. That was my point of contention. That your statement could be correct and incorrect at the same time. Light (LT) is certainly going to be more important over the course of a season than AV (kicker). But that doesn't mean that AV's contributions aren't HOF worthy. It just means that he doesn't impact enough plays to outweight Light's contributions.

For the record, I feel AV belongs in the hall.

33
by Richard (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 6:53pm

Re: #31

It seems like the HoF voters have a concept of replacement value with kickers. Strange, huh? There does seem to be a "how hard is it to find another" logic behind exclusion. Maybe I'm reading into that wrong.

That said, I'm not sure that they're using the concept that intelligently. With the typical football, tough-guy, bias, the thought proceeds that since they're not making tackles and running plays and risking injury that kickers are dispensible. But that's clearly not true. I think we've all seen more people run for first downs, throw great blocks, or complete a 25 yard out to the far side of the field than make a 50 yard field goal.

But as I stop and think about it, it does seem very interesting - the particular application of the replacement value concept towards kickers.

34
by B (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 7:02pm

RE #33: Maybe they should ask the Jets how easy it is to find a competent kicker.

35
by MDS (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 7:02pm

According to the USA Today salary database, Vinatieri was ninth in total salary and second in cap value in 2004. He was fourth in total salary and first in cap value in 2003. He was 20th in total salary and sixth in cap value in 2002.

I'm a little surprised that so many people think I'm insulting Vinatieri by saying he's not as good as Akers or Light. Those are two outstanding players.

36
by rk (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 7:04pm

If you argue that Vinatieri should go to Hall because of clutch performances, do you also argue that Robert Horry, who is known for making clutch shots all the time and also has 6 rings, should go into the basketball Hall? I know they're different sports, but the 2 are similar. Except that Horry plays all the time instead of coming in for one play like a kicker. I don't think Horry has a realistic chance of making his Hall of Fame, so I'm not sure where that leaves Vinatieri in my opinion.

37
by Richard (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 7:08pm

re: #36

I think you said it: Different sports.

In basketball, Horry's main task is not distinctly different than the other players on the court, and as such get evaluated for the entirety of his work against other players.

Vinatieri is a kicker, gets evaluated as a kicker, against other kickers.

It's much the same with relief pitchers in baseball or goalitenders in hockey.

At some point, you can say "this is an apple and that is an orange."

38
by Joel (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 7:11pm

RE: #22

I think you meant Scott Sisson. God, was he terrible.

39
by SLB1 (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 7:24pm

Reasonable minds can differ on the Vinatieri issue, but I do not think that he (or any other kicker) should be in the HoF. Just because Vinatieri kicked some field goals in the clutch is not that all that impressive a feat. The only kick that I thought was truly impressive was the one versus the Raiders in the Snow Bowl. The rest of them? Isn't making field goals what a kicker is supposed to do? When a kicker makes a field goal, it means he is doing his job. When he misses them, it means he gets canned, a la Scott Norwood and Doug Brien.

I know everyone in New England loves Vinatieri, and I can certainly understand why he is so popular, but it isn't like he is doing anything lots of other kickers could probably do if they played for the Pats.

Let the flames begin...

40
by Independent George (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 7:42pm

What does it say about me that my favorite player on the Broncos Super Bowl teams was Jason Elam?

41
by Oswlek (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 7:50pm

SLB1,

You may be right, but then that case could be made for many of the players in the HOF now. And, as several people have posted here, it doen't necessarily matter if others could, it matters if you did.

BTW, and I apologize if this hijaks the thread, but this has been said about nearly every NE player at one point or another. If just about any QB, K, OL, S, CB or WR could have been just as successful had they been on the Pats, why have they been so good? Have the LB's really been so great that they make everyone else that much better? (They are the only position that seems to have avoided this "any average player would have done just as good" thing) Are the coaches really that good?

42
by Doug (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 7:57pm

Akers is really really good on kickoffs. That's a great hall of fame rallying cry alright.

43
by mactbone (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 7:59pm

The Hall isn't about who is the best in this generation or that - it's about the best the game has ever seen.

One kicker is in the Hall and everyone wants Vinatieri to be the second based on, what, 5 kicks? Ludicrous.

Morten Andersen:
354 games (22 years), 136-202 (67%) from 40-50 yards, 40-83 (48%) from 50+, 520-658 (79% with 16 blocked) overall, a long of 60 and 798-808 (98.8%) on XP. 1475 kickoffs and 478 touchbacks (32.4%).

Gary Anderson:
353 games (22 years), 160-225 (71%) from 40-50 yards, 12-40 (30%) from 50+, 538-672 (79% with 27 blocked) overall, a long of 55 and 820-827 (99.2%) on XP. 1112 kickoffs and 199 touchbacks (17.8%).

Adam Vinatieri:
147 games (8 years +3 games) 69-96 (71%) from 40-50 yards, 8-16 (50%) from 50+, 240-302 (82% with 3 blocked) overall, a long of 57 and 334-341 (97.9%) on XP. 741 kickoffs and 53 touchbacks (7.1%).

Seriously, if we're only talking about field goals why not talk about the all-time leader in FG percentage?
Vanderjagt - 87%
Akers - 83%

Morten did play in a dome for most of his career but Gary played only 4 years in a dome.

44
by Richard (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 8:02pm

Re: #41

I'm not sure I've heard "the New England paradox" explained like that before, but if people say that, just point out Corey Dillion. Why didn't Dillon '04 put up similar numbers to Smith '03? Dillion seemed clearly more than just "as successful" as another player in the same role.

45
by Oswlek (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 8:03pm

Richard,

Good point. I forgot about Dillon.

46
by Richard (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 8:03pm

Re: #43

I don't think the Hall of about being the best; else, they wouldn't have minimum induction numbers per year.

I think it's about threads like these.

47
by LTA (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 8:44pm

I really don't think Vinateri is a HOF caliber player. The problem is one that should be familiar to readers of this site: sample size. How many clutch kick opportunities has he had (and how many has he made)? The answer is not many. He definitely has had more clutch opportunities than any other kicker in recent memory. And of course none of these clutch opportunities are because of Vinateri's skill (kickers don't drive into field goal range or lead your team to the super bowl). As mentioned before, some of these were clutch opportunities of his own making (he missed a kick earlier in the game) and I don't see how you can reward him for these. I just don't think you can use so few instances to put a guy in the HOF over other players with better overall careers.
Indeed, can we really even say Vinateri is clutch at this point? The sample size is so small that he could just be benefitting from random chance up until now. For example, say he has had 4 "clutch" opportunities and nailed all 4. But say his overall field goal accuracy is 75%. It doesn't take much math to see that given a 75% chance per kick and 4 kicks, he had a 31.6% chance of making all 4. Given the sample size, there is still a reasonable chance that he is the opposite of a clutch kicker (ie his field goal % drops way off in clutch situations but he has been "lucky" via the small sample size and made all the kicks).

48
by Chris (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 9:13pm

First I should say that I jumped up and down yelling "It's good! It's Good!! It's GOOOOOODD!!!!!" even worse than Gil Santos for about 5 minutes after the Snow Bowl kick, and I have several pictures of AV in my office. So my objectivity on this point is very, very low.

BUT, one thing that almost everyone forgets about the Snow Bowl is that SeaBass kicked his own 45-yarder, to the same end of the field as Adam's game-tying kick, in the third quarter. Certainly, it was no more but also no less difficult that AV's kick later on. And hardly anyone nominates Janikowski for the HOF.

And having said all of that, if Vinatieri doesn't get in to the HOF, they might as well shut the place down. I can't wait to see #4 in that yellow blazer. I plan to be there for the party.

49
by Ryan Mc (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 9:29pm

King's (and others) comments are consistent with my fear that HOF voters weight short-term, or moments, of brilliance excessively over long, consistent (and possibly less exciting) careers.
Regardless of one's opinion of Vinatieri, he should certainly stand in line behind Andersen and Anderson when it comes to HOF voting, unless he can string together another 8-10 years worth of good kicking.
That said, there's no excuse for trying to downplay the great clutch kicks that Vinatieri has made. It's not his problem that those kicks were only required because the games were close, his job is simply to make the kicks when asked to. It doesn't take too much imagination to believe that the Pats might have at least one fewer Superbowl win the last 4 years if they had a less reliable kicker, given the fact that very difficult FGs were the margin of victory for the Pats in:
Playoff win versus Oakland 2001
Superbowl versus the Rams
Playoff win versus the Titans 2003
Superbowl win 2003

50
by Carl (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 9:40pm

"He’s never offered Vinatieri anything close to that. If you say I’m wrong, fine, but acknowledge that Belichick and I are wrong together on this one."

MDS, as far as I and the NFLPA know, Vinatieri is the ONLY player in the NFL with a guaranteed contract. In a real sense, he got a signing bonus because all his wages are set.

51
by Carl (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 9:46pm

"King’s (and others) comments are consistent with my fear that HOF voters weight short-term, or moments, of brilliance excessively over long, consistent (and possibly less exciting) careers."

It's actually worse than you think. I'm not an HOF voter, but I talk to guys all the time who are. There is a great deal of politicking that goes into getting guys in, or not, and often stats have no role in this.

I'm called every year to put together some statistical prospectus on a player, and make a case for or against him, on behalf of a numbered-challenged colleague.

That's tough to do because, as we've all found out, certain forms of statistical measurements are hard to tabulate.

Because kicking is such a fungible pursuit, I believe a player should be uniquely above his peers.

But the voters don't exactly see it that way. Dynasties get rewarded, as do particularly colorful players on very good teams.

You might have seen the same dynamic in flux last year with the rookie of the year voting. I could only make a strong case for Clayton, comparing him to his peers at his position and those in other positions competing against him for the award.

My position swayed few voters. Oh well.

52
by Carl (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 9:52pm

No one has mentioned him by name, but there is a "pure" place kicker in the HOF.

Jan Stenerud, the guy who went to Montana State on a skiing scholarship (no, really).

Click on my name for his HOF bio.

53
by Andrew (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 10:18pm

Why should Vinatieri be in the Hall? Because it is the Hall of FAME.

But regarding achievement, isn't that its own fame also? Isn't one of the problems of the Hall that it is too much with famous moments and not enough with stupendous achievements?

Its in this sense that the Hall will be a bit empty if it doesn't induct people like kick/punt returner/running back Brian Mitchell (#2 all time in yardage from scrimmage), or David Akers (best all-around kicker ever).

But the question shouldn't be Vinatieri vs. Akers. It should be why the Hall has no respect for Special Teams players. The Eagles-Raiders game this week showed just how valuable Special Teams and Kickers are for a team not just on a clutch last minute kick, but throughout the whole game.

54
by Ray Guy (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 10:29pm

At this point, Carl usually says that he thinks Ray Guy, Harry Carson and Joe Grimm should be in the HOF.

I agree. Punters should be in the Hall.

55
by ElJefe (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 10:47pm

Stenerud is in the HoF for a long and distinguished career, and I believe he was the one who introduced "soccer-style" kicking to the NFL. (Or is Pete Gogolak given credit for that?)

I believe the only other HOFer who had a significant career as a placekicker was George Blanda, but I'm sure there were others who dabbled in placekicking (Paul Hornung?).

Basing a HoF case for a placekicker on "clutch" kicks is a rather fragile experience. If his team was worse, he never gets those opportunities. But if his team is better, he also doesn't get those opportunities. (Quick ... who was the kicker for the 4-SBs-in-6-years Steelers? I have no idea either, they won their Super Bowls without requiring last-minute FGs.)

So I think the concept of "clutch" kicks is only really useful as a tie-breaker. If Vinatieri has a comparable career to Anderson and Andersen, his SB kicks can be a rationalization for inducting him before them. But I think it's good for just that, a tie-breaker.

Or should I be expecting a groundswell of support for putting Jim O'Brien in the HoF?

Odd question: Has anyone ever missed a FG in that situation? O'Brien and Vinatieri made their oppostunities, Scott Norwood missed the significantly more pressure-packed win-or-lose kick. But I can't remember anyone else attempting a FG late in a tie SB.

Having said all that, I believe Vinatieri will be inducted to the HoF because voters have to put a face on the Patriots SB teams, and AV has a rep of being more manly than your typical kicker. I think it's the copious chest hair.

56
by Dervin (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 11:04pm

Goodness, is Akers vs. Vinatieri the new Brady vs. Manning?

57
by snik75 (not verified) :: Tue, 09/27/2005 - 11:33pm

Well, I think the discussion will eventally touch on Brady as well. If he never does anything else spectacular, is 3 SB wins enough for the Hall? I think probably - Farve is considered a lock, and he only won one. True he's got some longevity records, and has been pretty good for a long time... it certainly seems possible for Brady to muddle along with an average career for a few more years and end up in the same spot.

And yes, yes, yes Akers Viniteri and the Andersons belong in the hall of fame. Way more than some meatheads who now are announcers and therefore famous but probably weren't even all that good back when they played.

58
by Sid (not verified) :: Wed, 09/28/2005 - 12:15am

I'd vote for him. Of course, I'd also vote for David Akers (better kicker than Vinatieri), Ray Guy, Shane Lechler (the way he's going), and like 20 other kickers/punters.

The writers are biased, just like they're biased in baseball against relievers. There are a bunch of them who refuse to vote for special teams players/relief pitchers.

59
by Sid (not verified) :: Wed, 09/28/2005 - 12:23am

Some conventional statistics:

David Akers: 8th season in the NFL, 82% career on FGs, 98.1% on XPs, 62.8 kickoff average, 22 return average. Will be 31 in December.

Adam Vinatieri: 10th season in the NFL, 82.1% career on FGs, 97.9% on XPs, 62.5 on kickoffs, 21.5 return average. Will be 33 in December.

Adam: 2 years older, 2 more seasons in the league.

60
by VarlosZ (not verified) :: Wed, 09/28/2005 - 1:10am

I don't know how many kickers I want in the HoF, but if I could take just one, it would be Vinatieri.

Maybe you don't think players should get bonus points for being on championship teams, or for coming up big in the playoffs, and that's fine. Nonetheless, they do get bonus points, and if you judge Vinatieri by the same criteria used to judge other players, he's a lock.

Look at Brady, for example. His numbers aren't that much better than Trent Green's, but Brady is virtually assured a Hall spot, while Green has no chance whatsoever. If the Patriots and the Chiefs had had each other's defenses these past 4 years, maybe it would be the other way around.

MDS: Hey, Jason: Do you know who else is sorely misguided? Bill Belichick. That’s who decided to pay Matt Light $9 million in guarantees on his new contract. He’s never offered Vinatieri anything close to that. If you say I’m wrong, fine, but acknowledge that Belichick and I are wrong together on this one. (I’m sure he eagerly awaits hearing your other personnel suggestions.)

Light got more because the going rate for Left Tackles is much higher than that for kickers; it has nothing to do with their relative expertise at their position. Put another way, Vinatieri is the 2nd best kicker of his generation -- is Matt Light the 2nd best LT of his?

Besides, as has been pointed out, it's the "Hall of Fame", not the "Hall of Barely Quantifiable Contributions to Overall Team Success".

61
by Joey (not verified) :: Wed, 09/28/2005 - 1:39am

Not to argue with the love-fest for Akers and Vinatieri (both great kickers), but somebody has to mention the name Jason Elam. 13 years in the league, plenty of points, two Super Bowls, tied with Dempsey for the longest kick ever. Average slightly behind the other two, but their's will likely come down some the longer they play. Unless he pulls a Vinatieri and nails a bunch of clutch kicks to win championships, there's no way I see Akers getting in the Hall ahead of Elam.

62
by SJM (not verified) :: Wed, 09/28/2005 - 2:12am

Re #54:

I believe you meant Joe Jacoby, or Russ Grimm, or both. It is a travesty that not a single one of the Hogs is in the HOF. Did Joe Gibbs ever throw a pass, get a first down, make a tackle, or block anyone during his Super bowl wins?

Re #57:

You neglected to mention that Farve also has 3 MVP trophies, more than any other player ever (though Manning has 2 already and may get another). He's not just an accumulator who won 1 Super bowl. He had some great years with unimpressive WR's and RB's.

Re: #60:

Trent Green was a backup or injured for his entire career until he got to the Chiefs (8 years minus one as a mediocre starter for the Skins). He has never won a Super bowl or recieved an award and has been to only 1 Pro bowl in his 12 year career (5 years as a starter).
Tom Brady has been a starter for 4 of his 5 years, has won 3 Super bowls and was Super bowl MVP twice. He has also been to 2 Pro bowls in his 5 years. There is absolutely no comparison between Brady and Green.
You said that Green might look better with Brady's defense. Well, how would Brady look with Green's running game?

63
by Sid (not verified) :: Wed, 09/28/2005 - 2:18am

RE: 21

And let’s not forget he had the chance to kick the game-winning FG against the Panthers because he shanked a couple earlier in the game. If he makes those two there’s no drama at the end and his HOF cause is perversely hindered by his success.

Yep. Those were my comments after that game. Bottom line: Vinatieri almost cost them the game. He shouldn't get credit for that. Sure, he made a clutch kick, but he's lucky his shoddy performance didn't cost them the Super Bowl.

Not to mention (as brought up previously) that the Patriots valued him to the point of giving him - a kicker! - the franchise tag, and guaranteeing his salary.

Big deal. The Patriots wouldn't have used the franchise tag otherwise. The exclusive franchise tag simply means the average of the top 5 players at the position. If they were going to guarantee him $10 million a year, that'd be saying something. Paying him less than $2 million is no big deal. It's what he deserved. Obviously he's valuable, and one of the best kickers going.

64
by LnGrrrR (not verified) :: Wed, 09/28/2005 - 3:04am

Wow....we've got "kicker haterade for the HoF" combined with "Vinatieri vs Akers" and I think I sense some residual "Pats bashing" mixed in...

So what does this all say?

To those who think kickers shouldn't be in the HoF...get a clue. They score the most points of anyone on the team for a relatively thankless job. If it's so easy, why are there so many missed kicks in a season? If it's not such a pressure-packed job, then why did the Jets have to fire their kicker last year? Having your job on the line based off one kick IS stressful, no matter what people think.
I love that line of "Kickers kick, that's their job, why should we put them in the HoF?" Yes...and runners shouldn't go into the HoF for running...I mean, that's their job...and receivers for catching, etc etc...give me a break.

Re: Vinatieri being put into 'clutch' situations...well of course that's going to make him more popular. More people are watching these playoff games, and it's funny how his inability to play is being used on both sides. People say, "It's not like he moved his team down the field or anything!" but then when he goes to kick, people argue, "Yeah, if his team was scoring more, then he wouldn't even be known!" Guys, cmon. Pick a side. It's not HIS fault he was put into that situation right? As for small sample size, well heck let's cherrypick. Elway's been in how many SB's? And how many did he win? Boy..he must be a sucky QB right? :p

The whole Akers vs Vinatieri thing...AKers is great, but as someone mentioned, 'fame' does play into this politicking, and I'm sure more people know Adam Automatic than Akers. Everyone making the argument that Vinatieri isn't as good is making him sound like some scrub kicker. He's a VERY good kicker, with many game-winning kicks. (And he once tackled Herschel Walker.) PLUS he's made some clutch kicks as well. (And for everyone that says being clutch isn't important....I just can't understand what you're talking about.) So combined, and yeah, I think HoF is a definite possibility if he stay at his level for a few more years.

/rant off

65
by Israel (not verified) :: Wed, 09/28/2005 - 3:05am

#55 - Roy Gerela, no?

66
by hwc (not verified) :: Wed, 09/28/2005 - 4:13am

I'll let ya'll argue HOF. But, anyone who dismisses Vinatieri's role in three championship seasons with the Pats or who thinks that he has made 4 clutch kicks in his career hasn't watched Vinatieri week after week in often wretched late season New England weather.

A Hall of Fame golfer is the guy who consistently drains the 6 foot putts to win major championships. Same deal with a kicker, IMO. Clutch is the end-all and be all for an NFL kicker. Can you deliver the goods when the game is on the line?

As for the 2003 SuperBowl. Vinatieri played injured the entire season. Back injury. Nobody in the media knew about it until some players talked about the pain he played through down the stretch run.

67
by VarlosZ (not verified) :: Wed, 09/28/2005 - 5:20am

#62 (SJM): There is absolutely no comparison between Brady and Green.

Of course there is: their conventional statistics are quite similar, as I said. I suspect their DVOA and DPAR numbers would also be pretty close.

You said that Green might look better with Brady’s defense. Well, how would Brady look with Green’s running game?

Exactly, and how would Green look if he had the best coaching staff in the league? This is my point. I agree that Brady is a better QB, but so much of his reputation is built on the fact that his situation allows him to accomplish great things.

Imagine a player with stats (conventional and advanced) which are identical to Brady's over their hypothetical 12-year careers, except that Brady has three Super Bowl rings and two SB MVPs, while this other player has only had a few unexceptional playoff appearances due to mediocre talent around him. Brady's a HoF lock, but the other player would have no chance . . . and that's fine. I just don't understand how Brady's excellent career gets a bonus for playoff heroics while Vinatieri's excellent career doesn't.

68
by rep (not verified) :: Wed, 09/28/2005 - 5:43am

Vinatieri has a long list of end-of-game kicks, beyond the famous ones everyone knows from the Superbowl run. E.g., the game winner during Parcells first visit back to Foxboro as the Jets coach. Beyond that, though, he's always had some entertaining and/or impressive unkickerlike moments:

The time he outran Herschel Walker and saved a touchdown. The time he threw a touchdown pass. The way he flattened Desmond Howard the next time they saw each other, after the Superbowl loss to the Packers. The time he ran in a two-point conversion (although that one probably shouldn't count. Still, it's on his stat sheet.) I'm probably forgetting a few.

Sure, why not? Put him in the hall.

69
by James, London (not verified) :: Wed, 09/28/2005 - 8:27am

Currently, HoF disucssion of Kickers should begin with Anderson & Andersen as the all-time leading kickers.

Vinatieri has a much better shot than any other current Kicker. I'm at work and don't have PFP to hand, but somewhere it says that the only reason David Akers hasn't kicked a game-winning FG in the Superbowl is he hasn't had the chance. Unless/until he does, he is going to struggle. Given the lack of consideration for ST it seems likely that only 1 kicker from the current crop will get in, if any do.

If he collapses overnight, is Vinatieri's 'body of work' to date enough to get him in the hall? 3 yrs ago Kurt Warner looked a certain HoF'er. Now, probably not. If Vinatieri turns into a Grammatica, will his rep get him in or does he need Aderson/sen type longevitiy to make it?

Personally I think if you consider him a legit contender now, he has to remain so regardless of what happens from now on.

On that basis I think 3 of the best seasons ever, two MVPs two SBs and a SB win should get Warner in, but I guess I'm in a minority.

70
by Carl (not verified) :: Wed, 09/28/2005 - 3:29pm

I feel handicapped by this discussion because I know how the boys actually hash out who gets into the HOF and who doesn't.

Trust me, issues like this never come up.

Want to know why V has a good chance of getting into Canton?

The Pats have built a dynasty. But in the post-1978, post-1994 reality of the NFL, teams don't keep players around for very long.

Blame the cap and free agency, but also the high rate of injuries in the league.

The three least injured positions on a football team are punter, kicker and QB, in that order. These are the guys who have been fated to last physically longer than their peers in the league.

Writers are going to want to recognize the Pats for their great work. That means the head coach will get in, Brady and someone else who stuck around for awhile.

Might as well be the kicker.

Is that fair? Maybe, maybe not. V probably will be the last one to get in, and the Boston elector will likely have to horsetrade on votes to help someone else.

What I have proposed to my colleagues is that, 12 years into the CBA, they at least start to consider front office personnel NOT the coach for HOF consideration. IMHO, the Pats' GM deserves as much credit for erecting this dynasty as anyone.

71
by Daniel (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 1:41am

I think the issue of inducting Vinatieri into the HOF is moot. Kickers, nor punters make the Hall. Jan Stenerud is the only kicker to gain enshrinement so far. What the HOF has shown is a tendency to limit the number of players from one dynasty to gain enshrinement, and it becomes more of a political exercise by sporstwriters championing their guys. Maybe a handful of players from this Patriots dynasty will make it, the question is, which ones? I see Brady and Rodney Harrison as the only "locks." McGinnest, Seymour, Law, and Vinatieri should all get consideration. But if you're the resident HOF voter from New England, who do you throw your support behind? As years pass guys have less of a chance and if you push for Vinatieri it may come at the expense of other key members of this dynasty.

72
by Daniel (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 1:42am

I think the issue of inducting Vinatieri into the HOF is moot. Kickers, nor punters make the Hall. Jan Stenerud is the only kicker to gain enshrinement so far. What the HOF has shown is a tendency to limit the number of players from one dynasty to gain enshrinement, and it becomes more of a political exercise by sporstwriters championing their guys. Maybe a handful of players from this Patriots dynasty will make it, the question is, which ones? I see Brady and Rodney Harrison as the only "locks." McGinnest, Seymour, Law, and Vinatieri should all get consideration. But if you're the resident HOF voter from New England, who do you throw your support behind? As years pass guys have less of a chance and if you push for Vinatieri it may come at the expense of other key members of this dynasty.

73
by Purds (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 1:43am

Let me first say I think AV ought to be a HOF inductee if he has as long a career as the Andersens. I DO think kicks in big moments overshadow longevity, and AV has had the lion's share in the past decade.

That said, however, I wonder if we put too much stock in post-season moments. I know no one wants to equate the NFL with MLB, but if we take the overweighing of post-season argument favoring AV and put it into baseball, do we need to say Bernie Williams is a baseball HOF lock because NO PLAYER has more hits, extra-base hits, total bases, RBI's, doubles, HR's, or runs scored in post-season history than Williams. Surely a list like that makes a player a HOF guy, by the AV standards we're applying to the NFL. Or does it?

(Are NE fans going to waffle on this considering Williams is a NY guy?)

74
by Daniel (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 1:45am

Sorry about the double post. Computer difficulties.

75
by Joey (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 2:32am

Vinatieri certainly has the big kicks, but I'm doubting he'll play long enough to get the total points needed to convince the voters. Seven of the top 20 all-time leading scorers are current active kickers and AV is still 2-3 years away from cracking that list. (See link for stats) He simply must end his career near the top 10 (likely to be around 1,600 points) to have any shot. (That's probably another 5 years or so as he started this year at 1,058.) Even then, will voters be ready for another kicker so soon after letting in Anderson, Andersen, probably Elam (who'll likely retire around the top 5 in all-time scoring) and passing over four other contemporaries (Carney, Stover, Christie and Hanson) who'll all be in or near the top 10? That's not all that promising.

76
by andy (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 6:44am

Just had to comment on the "CHARLIE WEIS DID A HECK OF A THING THE OTHER DAY" part of the article.

That is one of the most moving things I have come across in sport. The whole team should feel very proud and they have my utmost respect.

77
by andy (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 7:26am

re 53: "Why should Vinatieri be in the Hall? Because it is the Hall of FAME."

So shouldn't the bloke who drove that snowplow be in the hall. ;>)

(I am the new Carl)

78
by Hart Lee Dykes (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 11:24am

Man, I honestly didn't think the topic of Vinatieri as a potential HOF candidate would be that controversial. I guess I can see the argument that kickers shouldn't be in there at all. I personally disagree, but if that's your position, I can see it.

But, assuming you believe a kicker could make it, it wouldn't seem to me, given his body of work, that suggesting Vinatieri should be in would get people's dander up that much.

Addressing a couple of other points made earlier:

1. SB XXXVIII: Adam did shank one early, the other was blocked. He did not shank two kicks.

2. The Bernie Williams argument: the issue there is that Bernie Williams has the most hits, HRs etc. in post-season history mostly because there is 1 more round of playoffs now than there were 15 years ago, and 2 more rounds of playoffs now than there were 35+ years ago. Had there been 3 rounds of playoffs in the '20s, '30s or '50s, there would likely be several Yankees who would have amassed higher totals than Bernie.

I do think a baseball player's post season accomplishments could push a borderline HOFer over the edge. Bernie is a great player, but in my opinion not quite a HOFer even with the post-season stuff. As a Sox fan, I will also say that I don't think Curt Schilling's post-season accomplishments should put him in the hall either.

79
by Peyton Manning (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 11:41am

I think Mike Vanderjagt should be in the Hall of Fame.

The Idiot Canadian Likered' Up Kicker Hall of Fame.

80
by Peyton Manning (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 11:42am

I think Mike Vanderjagt should be in the Hall of Fame.

The Idiot Canadian Likered' Up Kicker Hall of Fame.

81
by princeton73 (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 11:43am

I gave up when he failed to correct the reader who said that Randy Moss used to harp on his quarterback Jeff Garcia when they played together.

why do you assume that King knew it was a mistake?

and besides, all those tall, obnoxious wide receivers from small schools all look alike

82
by Mr. Obvious (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 12:19pm

"Rodney Harrison as the only 'locks.'"

RODNEY HARRISON????????????? Come on!

83
by Carl (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 1:58pm

"He has three catches for 26 yards so far this season. He was shut out in Sunday's game with Carolina."

Boston also was able to score another supply of steroids from the Panthers' mobile drug store, Dr. Shortt.

84
by B (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 5:28pm

I found the perfect arugment for why he should be in the Hall. Skip Bayless says Kickers arn't real NFL players. Since everything Skip says is wrong, kickers are real NFL players, and therefore kickers should be in the hall. Since Vinatieri is the most famous kicker, he should be in.

85
by Carl (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 5:55pm

The rate for serious injuries among kickers in the NFL is 21.1 percent per season. If that doesn't mean they're "real" NFL players, I don't know who is.

86
by Purds (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 6:00pm

Hart Lee:

I agree (to an extent) that Williams has more of those because of opportunity, but that's exactly the argument that the Akers over AV guys say -- AV looks clutch because he's had the most chances to look clutch. Williams looks good because he's had the most chances. Should AV and Williams get in because they took advantage of their situations, or not?

87
by Ryan Carney (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 8:23pm

I think you could reasonably say that Vinatieri was involved in three of the 100 most significant plays in the history of football, and that kick in the snow against Oakland is like...give you chills when you see it in on an ESPN "NFL'S Greatest Moments" montage. (sorry, no accent marks on the keyboard) this being said, you kinda do have to let him in. I think just to make him feel weird though, let him in with guys like Ray Lewis, Strahan, Favre..just the toughest sons of bitches you can find out there at the time, it would just be kind of ironic.

88
by Ryan carney (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 8:26pm

B, (84) I couldn't agree with you more about Skip Bayless. I don't think he's ever been right about anything, pragmatically or morally speaking. I've never heard him utter anything with any semblance of correctness or meaning, and it makes me believe that I could be a sports journalist, and also believe that putting hi on the air discredits ESPN greatly.

89
by Carl (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 8:30pm

If A, then B. If B, then C. A = C.

Skip Bayless is a Cretan. All Cretans lie. I am Skip Bayless. I am a Cretan.

The paradox that eats the enigma.

Kickers are players. Kickers play in the NFL. Only real players play in the NFL. Kickers are not real players.

90
by mactbone (not verified) :: Thu, 09/29/2005 - 9:14pm

If it's the Hall of FAME then why isn't Bo Jackson in? What about Pat Summerall?

This is not going to format but I calculated FGs per game and touchbacks per kickoff (made this a percentage). I also figured out how all of these guys would do if they all played 354 games (the amount Morten played).

........................FG/game TB/KO 354 Games
Gary Anderson 1.524 17.9% 539.496
Morten Andersen 1.469 32.8% 520.026
Vinatieri 1.687 7.1% 597.198
Akers 1.41 10.0% 499.14
Elam 1.691 10.0% 598.614
Rackers 1.149 17.9% 406.746
Stover 1.56 12.5% 552.24
Vanderjagt 1.768 2.7% 625.872

Morten Andersen obliterates them all in TB pct. I knew he was good, but I didn't think the difference would be that much.

Also, Vanderjagt could be the first kicker to break 600 FG and he would do it handily.

91
by Sid (not verified) :: Fri, 09/30/2005 - 12:19am

RE: 61

I'm not sure who is more overrated: Elam or Vanderjagt.
Compare Elam in outdoors non-Denver stadium to Akers and Vinatieri. You'll see why Elam isn't quite there, even though he's had a very good career. Ryan Longwell has also had a good career.
Elam's stats have been inflated because of his home stadium and he hasn't been kicking off since 2002. Vanderjagt gets to kick in a dome, and he can't kick off at all. He's almost as bad as Mike Bartrum. ;)

92
by ryan (not verified) :: Fri, 10/14/2005 - 4:14am

RE: #90 Mort Andersen also kicked before they moved the Ts back and lowered them by an inch in an attempt to reduce touchbacks...

Also, AV hit another clutch kick. put him in the hall already