When the Detroit Lions line up to attempt a long field goal this season, a current member of the roster may be called upon, but it may not be Nate Freese or Giorgio Tavecchio.
Freese nor Tavecchio has separated himself from the other so far in camp. That wouldn’t be a problem if it was because both have been impressive, but that hasn’t been the case. Both have suffered from inconsistency and though Freese likely has the advantage due to being drafted in the seventh round last May, concerns about his leg strength appear well-founded.
If Freese can at least show the high level of consistency that helped make him a Lions draft pick – he didn’t miss a kick as a senior at Boston College – then the Lions may be able to live with the limited range. Why? Because they have another option.
Punter Sam Martin. Via the Detroit Free Press:
Martin also said there’s a possibility he could be used on longer field-goal attempts. He lacks consistency as a placekicker, but he has plenty of power.
Martin showed plenty of power in winning kickoff duties last season, a role he’s expected to keep no matter who ends up as the kicker on the final roster. At the very least, Martin would give the Lions an option when facing a very long field goal late in the half.
Here is Martin hitting a 65-yard field goal at a training camp earlier in the summer:
And just for fun, here is Martin booting a kickoff over 80 yards and through the uprights.
I wonder from what distance he can kick it into a trash can or a moving boat.