Extra-point kicks could get extra interesting this summer.
Of course, even mildly interesting would be an upgrade.
NFL kickers made a record 99.6 percent of their PATs last season, making that the most sure-fire play in football. But according to NFL.com’s Judy Battista, the league’s competition committee has discussed experimenting in the preseason with placing the ball at the 25-yard line on extra-point kicks — which would mean 42-yard attempts. Last season, kickers made 83 percent of their field-goal attempts that were 40 to 49 yards long.
“There’s no consensus yet,” a committee member told Battista of moving back PATs. “We could experiment in preseason, but we are not yet.”
Moving the kicks back presumably would increase the likelihood of teams attempting two-point conversions, which currently have a success rate of around 50 percent.
Even though extra points are practically gimmes, things go haywire every so often.
In 2007, New Orleans was trailing at Jacksonville, 20-13, and scored an unbelievable, multilateral, 75-yard touchdown in the final seconds. The clock expired during the play. It was one for the ages, the NFL’s answer to “The Play” in the 1982 California-Stanford game.
All that Saints kicker John Carney had to do was make the extra point.
And he missed it wide right.
But that’s a once-in-a-decade gaffe in the NFL, if that.
On a busy day around the NFL, the Philadelphia Eagles have released wide receiver Jason Avant.
He played his first eight NFL seasons in Philadelphia and ranks 11th in team history with 297 receptions for 3,646 yards and 12 touchdowns. He was drafted in the fourth round in 2006 from the University of Michigan. In 2010, Avant was chosen by his teammates as the Ed Block Courage Award recipient in recognition of the adversity he overcame in his youth.
The Eagles re-signed free agent wide receivers Jeremy Maclin and Riley Cooper last week. Their return made Avant more expendable.
Avant had 38 receptions for 447 yards and two touchdowns last season. He had a career-high 53 catches in 2012.
Division-rival Dallas is close to getting under the salary cap after restructuring the contracts of quarterback Tony Romo, linebacker Sean Lee and cornerback Orlando Scandrick.
The adjustment on the six-year, $108 million extension Romo signed last year will save the Cowboys about $10 million on the salary cap, while the conversions on Lee and Scandrick will cut about $7 million. Lee and Scandrick got new contracts last year as well.
The Cowboys are slightly less than $1 million over the $133 million cap a week before they must clear the remaining space.