The weird, and at times comical, kicking situation for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers continues to take twists and turns. And the latest one involves, wait for it, the signing Thursday of a European kicker who kicked professionally last year in the German Football League.
Denmark born Philip Andersen kicked for the Berlin Rebels of the German Football League a year ago making 16 of 25 field goals. However, he apparently was impressive during workouts at former Buccaneer kicker Michael Husted’s kicking camp in the United States. Then earlier this week, he kicked for Buccaneers GM Jason Licht, his new special teams coach, Keith Armstrong and others at the Bucs facility and was offered a contract.
This included, famously drafting former Florida State kicker Roberto Aguayo in the second round of the 2016 draft only to cut him in the preseason of 2017 after a series of missed extra points in fuel goals.
Last year, Tampa Bay went with veteran Chandler Catanzaro, whom they gave a $3 million guaranteed salary, but also cut him in November after he missed two critical field goals at home in a loss to the Redskins. The Bucs turned to veteran free agent Cairo Santos (above), who was solid, but is not signed for 2019.
There is further speculation that recently released 43 year old Falcons kicker Matt Bryant, who kicked for the Bucs earlier in the 2000s, may become an option. Bryant is one of the most successful and accurate kickers in the NFL over the last 10 years. However, Atlanta released him Tuesday saving over $2 million for their the salary cap.
Bryant has expressed that he wants to continue to play and the natural tie-in is the former Falcons special-teams coach, Armstrong now being with the Buccaneers. He did miss three games a year ago after injuring his hamstring kicking a final field goal in the last minute of a game, ironically against the Bucs, in Atlanta’s win in October over Tampa Bay.
Another factor is that Bryant has not kicked off in Atlanta for years. The team instead has used the stronger leg of punter / specialist Matt Bosher to kickoff.
Back to the Dane, Andersen, he is apparently no relation to Hall of Fame kicker Morten Andersen, who kicked for 25 years in the NFL mostly with the Saints and the Falcons. That Andersen was an outstanding 80% for his career in field goals making a staggering 565 of them.
There is also an eyeball raising part of Philip Andersen’s bio in that: he has kicked for four professional teams in the German Football League already. Then again, Licht and the Buccaneers have shipped kickers in and out over the course of the last few years at the same rate.
By the way, our Roy Cummings approves of the move from a “heritage standpoint.”
As a man of Danish descent (grandparents on mother’s side are from Hobro) i have to admit that I am very excited about the #Bucs signing of PK Phillip Andersen.
— Roy Cummings (@RCummingsFHCN) February 8, 2019
It really won’t be known until at least March when the Bucs elect to re-sign Santos or not, or elect to sign Matt Bryant and bring him in, as to what kind of competition will go against Andersen.
Tampa Bay could obviously bring in another veteran kicker, and, we are going to write it: maybe draft one in the late rounds this time of the upcoming April draft, too.
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