Skip to content

Vikings release Ryan Longwell

Ryan+Longwell+Minnesota+Vikings+v+Carolina+HTljdBFDPYvl Getty Images

It was the end of a long relationship Monday when the Vikings have cut longtime kicker Ryan Longwell.

Longwell sent out a tweet thanking “Viking Nation” for their support over the years and the Vikings later confirmed that they had parted ways with a man they signed to a four-year contract extension just last year. At first glance it might seem that Longwell, who turns 38 in August, might have decided not to keep playing, but Tom Pelissero of 1500 ESPN in Minneapolis reports that it was not a mutual parting of the ways.

The Vikings will now likely give the job to Blair Walsh, the rookie from Georgia that they took in the sixth round of the draft. Walsh connected on just over 50 percent of his field goal attempts as a senior.

Longwell, who spent six years with the Vikings after nine years in Green Bay, didn’t have a great 2011 — 22-of-28 on field goals, mediocre kickoffs — but there was a thought he’d at least compete with Walsh for the job. His salary of $1.75 million comes off the books, although the Vikings will still have some dead money thanks to the 3.5 million signing bonus he got when he signed his deal in 2011. He’ll likely find at least a chance to compete for a job over the summer.

Permalink 71 Comments Feed for comments Latest Stories in: Minnesota Vikings, Rumor Mill, Top Stories
71 Responses to “Vikings release Ryan Longwell”
  1. Carl Gerbschmidt says: May 7, 2012 6:27 PM

    That’s okay, he wouldn’t have liked LA anyway…

  2. ilovefoolsball says: May 7, 2012 6:28 PM

    BWAHAHAHA
    Kickers are better seen and not heard.

  3. christinamer says: May 7, 2012 6:29 PM

    Sad day in Minnesota…

  4. apooster says: May 7, 2012 6:29 PM

    It was bound to happen after they drafted a kicker. 2 mil + for a kicker on a rebuilding team is too much, plus his leg power had diminished. Couldn’t reach the endzone on kickoffs.

    However, he is one of the classiest Viking players in years. A very accurate kicker that will be picked up somewhere.

    Best of luck Ryan, and thanks for all the memories.

  5. hutch119 says: May 7, 2012 6:31 PM

    “Walsh connected on just over 50 percent of his field goal attempts as a senior.”

    ————————

    Wow good for him for getting a starting job. If any teams are interested I could probably connect about 50% of the time.

  6. mianfr says: May 7, 2012 6:31 PM

    Just over 50%? Is that legit?

  7. lpd1964 says: May 7, 2012 6:31 PM

    Good kicker, more importantly, good guy. As a Viking fan, sorry to see him go.

  8. vikesfansteve says: May 7, 2012 6:32 PM

    Good, his short kickoff in OT against the Saints basically handed them the victory with only 35 yds needed for a winning FG.

  9. garyman1 says: May 7, 2012 6:32 PM

    I promise you he is better right now than a lot of kickers out there. If he wants, he’ll be kicking in the NFL very soon.
    Oh, he’s a good guy too.

  10. tizomps says: May 7, 2012 6:35 PM

    cause he can’t kick the ball long well anymore.

  11. textexington says: May 7, 2012 6:36 PM

    Another Packer’s reject.

  12. squared80 says: May 7, 2012 6:37 PM

    If you read up on the guy, he was actually the #1 rated kicker in the draft, yet he was the 3rd one taken because of some issues in the 1st half of last year. Beofre that, he was 40/45 FG, 88/89 XP, plus 6/7 on 50 yards or more. He’ll be fine.

    Longwell is an awesome guy, good kicker. But last year was ugly, he’s 38, can’t kick it into the end zone on kickoffs, and is making a lot of money. Not worth it on a rebuilding team.

  13. shieldsisland37 says: May 7, 2012 6:37 PM

    Ryan ShortBad is benedict arnold. I cant believe he left us for the Vikes.

  14. briang123 says: May 7, 2012 6:40 PM

    Shocking! I may have to draft Neil Rackers in the 16th round of my fantasy football draft now.

  15. descendency says: May 7, 2012 6:40 PM

    This was clearly a message towards Chris Kluwe. He’s way too talkative on twitter, reddit, and other social mediums.

    /s

  16. bearsrulepackdrool says: May 7, 2012 6:42 PM

    shieldsisland37 says:
    May 7, 2012 6:37 PM
    Ryan ShortBad is benedict arnold. I cant believe he left us for the Vikes.

    ___________________________

    That guy Mason Crosby isn’t too bad. He kicked you to two Super Bowls.

  17. bearsrulepackdrool says: May 7, 2012 6:43 PM

    bearsrulepackdrool says:
    May 7, 2012 6:42 PM
    shieldsisland37 says:
    May 7, 2012 6:37 PM
    Ryan ShortBad is benedict arnold. I cant believe he left us for the Vikes.

    ___________________________

    That guy Mason Crosby isn’t too bad. He kicked you to two Super Bowls.
    __________________________

    One.

  18. pnthrz1 says: May 7, 2012 6:44 PM

    Come on Panthers, bring this guy in for a shot to compete with Mare.

  19. gslumbers says: May 7, 2012 6:48 PM

    Thanks for the memories? Man, Viking fans have to dig pretty deep.

  20. jjpmn says: May 7, 2012 6:49 PM

    Good move. I like Longwell and I think he still has some life left in the leg as a FG kicker (not enough on kickoffs). The Vikings are rebuilding. I believe he will be 39 when the season starts. He’s also highly compensated. By the time the team is ready to make a real run again, Longwell will be north of 40 and possibly retired. It would have been cool if he could have showed the rookie the ropes, but I assume we will find out that the Vikings did him a favor by cutting him now so he has time to sign elsewhere. If so, classy move.

    Or maybe they’re just going to cut a player an hour until the legislators vote yes on the stadium. Yes, I’m kidding. Did I really see a legislator pimping his father’s (a former sports agent) book on the house floor today? Good lord.

  21. 4truegrit says: May 7, 2012 6:51 PM

    @gerbschmidt, call in to Barreiro show soon please, so we can hear more of your cheesehead idiocy.

  22. taintedsaints2009 says: May 7, 2012 6:56 PM

    maybe the vikings did this so he wouldn’t have to be on an 0-16 team

  23. fijabbersman345 says: May 7, 2012 6:57 PM

    Carl Gerbschmidt says:
    May 7, 2012 6:27 PM

    That’s okay, he wouldn’t have liked LA anyway…

    ————————

    You should get some fresh air, I hear it gets pretty stuffy in basements if you troll in them all day.

  24. purplehayseuss says: May 7, 2012 6:57 PM

    Adieu, Longwell. He’ll probably get another team pretty soon. Lots of kickers ride the carousel for a year or two with many teams.

    He has really been great, but it has to end for everyone. There are few NFL teams now that will hold a roster spot for a field goal specialist, particularly when Longwell has fallen in points and missed more lately.

    I thought the Vikes might actually keep the rookie for kickoffs through the end zone and let Longwell score, but the kid must have impressed them in rookie camp so far.

  25. limbhanger says: May 7, 2012 7:00 PM

    Uh, Benedict Arnold, I think I remember a Green Bay player by the name of Brett Favre doing the same thing! Give the guy his props, good person and player going out with class.

  26. gadzod says: May 7, 2012 7:04 PM

    So, Longwell didn’t have a “great” 2011 season going 22-28. Now, correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t 78.5% better than “just over 50%”?

  27. imaginesuperbowlwin says: May 7, 2012 7:04 PM

    Blair Walsh “Project”…

  28. randallflagg52 says: May 7, 2012 7:04 PM

    @shieldsisland37

    Ryan ShortBad???? That is the worst pun ever, and thats saying something. You should lose your internet commenting privledges for life sir.

  29. football2011 says: May 7, 2012 7:06 PM

    It appears to me the Vikings are lowering payroll for sale to LA buyers and a move. They signed no big name free agents and have cut several high priced vets this off season including Longwell now.

    The Minnesota Legislature is in the process of giving them the one finger salute as we speak (they are requiring $100M more from Wilf and a guarantee that he pay all cost over runs). Obviously, Wilf will not accept these terms.

    I think Wilf knew that he would never get a square deal from Minnesota Legislature and has been preparing for this for a while.

    Longwell getting cut is just the latest step.

  30. urcrap says: May 7, 2012 7:07 PM

    Thanks for your service Ryan. Time to move on.

  31. granadafan says: May 7, 2012 7:10 PM

    Longwell has had a fantastic career going back to his college days at CAL. Best of luck to Ryan.

  32. jluns275 says: May 7, 2012 7:12 PM

    The Vikings showed their fans they wouldn’t settle for a kicker that had an accuracy rate of over 75% last year by burning a draft pick on a kid with an accuracy rate of 50%.
    By default I usually root for the Vikes in their NFC North divisional games, since I really don’t care for the other teams-so I don’t like to seem as if I’m trying to pile on the Vikes during what has become a rather uncomfortable offseason for them.
    But with decisions like this, is there any wonder their organization appears to be in shambles right now?
    Vikings fans deserve better.

  33. wludford says: May 7, 2012 7:15 PM

    Thanks for all the good years and overall great performance as kicker for the Vikings. It is a young-man’s game, even for kickers. Best wishes for the future.

  34. lbpackfan says: May 7, 2012 7:19 PM

    Great guy…sad to see. At least he got to a Super Bowl with the first team he played with in his career…………………..

  35. mediasloppy says: May 7, 2012 7:26 PM

    The good news for Longwell is he’ll have more time for his favorite sport. Golf.

  36. jmsieli says: May 7, 2012 7:59 PM

    Hey Gerbschmidt, aka moron, call any legislator in MN, they need to stay, think it through, if the vikes stay, it’s the easiest two wins of any year, if they move to LA, they realign and move to NFC West, St. Louis moves to NFC North and the Packers will be bottom feeders once again, GO RAMS!!!!!

  37. vikefan says: May 7, 2012 8:00 PM

    nice guy but the Vikings should have never extended his contract last year….kickoff touchback is rarity for him even with moving the tee up 10 yards, & vikings have not been inside 30 yard line on regular basis enuff to require his services

  38. staffordsyear says: May 7, 2012 8:03 PM

    Viking nation?

  39. fwippel says: May 7, 2012 8:09 PM

    As a Viking fan, I hate to see this. I was hoping he’d stay on as the FG kicker while Walsh handled kickoffs.

    Best of luck, Ryan, and thanks for all the clutch kicks over the last several years. You’ve been the best kicker this team has had in decades.

  40. jonny42671 says: May 7, 2012 8:17 PM

    If it wasn’t for the classless TAINTS cheating. You would have kicked us to the Superbowl. Thanks Ryan and good luck !!

  41. drewpr says: May 7, 2012 8:30 PM

    lbpackfan says: May 7, 2012 7:19 PM

    Great guy…sad to see. At least he got to a Super Bowl with the first team he played with in his career…………………..

    ____________________________________

    What team would that be? His first season with the Packers they lost the Superbowl.

  42. twoliveted says: May 7, 2012 8:34 PM

    Ryan will make his decision where to sign based on what city who shows interest in him has the most diverse restaurant lineup. He won’t go for cities with only Applebees to eat at.

  43. minnysoda says: May 7, 2012 8:38 PM

    apooster says:
    May 7, 2012 6:29 PM
    It was bound to happen after they drafted a kicker. 2 mil + for a kicker on a rebuilding team is too much, plus his leg power had diminished. Couldn’t reach the endzone on kickoffs.

    However, he is one of the classiest Viking players in years. A very accurate kicker that will be picked up somewhere.

    Best of luck Ryan, and thanks for all the memories.

    Yea I guess a Viking’s Fan idea of a classy guy is a guy who insults Green Bay after he made millions of Dollars there.
    His last year in Green Bay opposing kickers were better than him at Lambeau. Why would Green bay want him anymore?
    I would like to Thank Him for convincing Favre to come back one more year It was the beginning of their slide into the septic tank in loserville Nice Job jerk now go help Brent mow his lawn

  44. thankheavenfornumberseven says: May 7, 2012 8:38 PM

    Walsh was 21 out of 35 as a senior. I know 60% isn’t that great, but I wouldn’t describe it as “just over 50%.”

  45. emoney826 says: May 7, 2012 8:41 PM

    As a packer fan, I always liked Longwell. He was a good kicker. Didn’t wanna see him go to Minnesota, but the packers let him go and he finished off a great career with them. He was always a safe bet to draft in fantasy football.

  46. vikescry1 says: May 7, 2012 8:41 PM

    bearsrulepackdrool says:
    May 7, 2012 6:43 PM
    bearsrulepackdrool says:
    May 7, 2012 6:42 PM
    shieldsisland37 says:
    May 7, 2012 6:37 PM
    Ryan ShortBad is benedict arnold. I cant believe he left us for the Vikes.

    ___________________________

    That guy Mason Crosby isn’t too bad. He kicked you to two Super Bowls.
    __________________________

    One.

    ————————————————————————————————————————————————— first of all sam, ryan has always had a short leg but i’ll take the accuracy he had in cold conditions. yes he left us for the vikings but so what, its a business. and if you were in the same shoes you would’ve done the same thing. and to the 2 superbowl thing? bahahahahaha you know you just talk and don’t get your facts straight when a bears fan has to tell a vikings fan something accurate about the packers… lmao as far as ryan goes he’ll be competeing for a team this year if he wants to. on the vikings dime too.

  47. vikescry1 says: May 7, 2012 8:43 PM

    opps my bad a bears fan correcting himself.

  48. tweeter75 says: May 7, 2012 8:43 PM

    A rookie that completed just over 50% of his field goals last year at Georgia over Ryan Longwell?

    Wow.

  49. adantsa says: May 7, 2012 8:54 PM

    I know he would have made the kick to send us to the Super Bowl. No doubt in my mind. Sorry to see you leave Ryan.

  50. voiceofrealism says: May 7, 2012 9:00 PM

    vikesfansteve says: May 7, 2012 6:32 PM

    Good, his short kickoff in OT against the Saints basically handed them the victory with only 35 yds needed for a winning FG.
    ——————————————-
    Yeah, it was Longwell that handed them the win. Wrong ex Packer.

    Paid him almost 4mil for last year. Nice….

  51. terrellblowens says: May 7, 2012 9:22 PM

    Blair Walsh is garbage, the Vikings are making a huge mistake. Consistent kickers are always underrated assets to a team. Every time the Vikings lose a game by 3 and there’s a missed field goal here or there, it will be hard not to second guess this decision.

  52. Little Earthquake says: May 7, 2012 9:35 PM

    He’s 38?? Wow, I’m getting old.

  53. markpackman says: May 7, 2012 9:39 PM

    No quarterback, and now, no kicker? AP will have to do ALL the scoring this year! I predict a drought in the “points for” department.

  54. urcrap says: May 7, 2012 10:14 PM

    I love all the change going on with the Vikes. I just hope they get to recharge in MN and not some place else. Pass that damn bill!

  55. adubsinpurple says: May 7, 2012 10:16 PM

    Love ryan Longwell, and have to say, im watching the Vikes hearings at the capital, and feel we as a society have collapsed. if this is the process to make laws everyday, i should kill myself. he he. loved John Kriesel sign that said” help me”.

  56. bearsoxass says: May 7, 2012 10:28 PM

    Always a Packers.

  57. johnnyb216 says: May 7, 2012 10:49 PM

    F him. He’s as much a packer as brett the Viking was. They should retire his number along with bretts to make it official.
    .

  58. adubsinpurple says: May 7, 2012 11:19 PM

    I love John Kriesel. The most real person on the House, and an american hero.

  59. frozeninfear says: May 7, 2012 11:19 PM

    Longwell had trouble kicking the ball into the end zone when he was with Green Bay. Packer fans called him Ryan Shortwell.

  60. thankheavenfornumberseven says: May 7, 2012 11:30 PM

    Great guy, but I’ll never forget the extra point he missed against Chicago in 2009. Because of that, the game went into OT and we lost, costing us home field advantage in the NFC Championship game. We all know what happened next.

  61. 7ransponder says: May 7, 2012 11:46 PM

    textexington says:
    May 7, 2012 6:36 PM
    Another Packer’s reject

    ————————-

    A reject that happens to be the all time scoring leader for the Packers. Yeah, you make a lot of sense there.

  62. ponder7vikings says: May 8, 2012 12:13 AM

    Thanks for everything. Sorry you didn’t get to kick us to the Super Bowl.

    Thanks Brett lol

  63. trapshoot says: May 8, 2012 12:22 AM

    Cutting a known commodity for an unproven rookie. Interesting move?

  64. dobberdubinsky says: May 8, 2012 12:44 AM

    Thanks for the solid years Longwell. It’s too bad f-ing Chilly couldn’t find a way to get you a shot at the game winning field goal against New Orleans a couple years ago, I’m sure you would’ve nailed it. Good luck in the future!

  65. Carl Gerbschmidt says: May 8, 2012 8:30 AM

    thankheavenfornumberseven says:May 7, 2012 8:38 PM

    Walsh was 21 out of 35 as a senior. I know 60% isn’t that great, but I wouldn’t describe it as “just over 50%.”

    ——

    You wouldn’t? Well, I hope whatever your job is, it doesn’t require an open and honest interpretation of statistics.

  66. dukemarc says: May 8, 2012 9:58 AM

    Any truth to the rumor that Spielman handed Longwell a Applebee’s Gift Card as his last paycheck?

  67. minnysoda says: May 8, 2012 10:34 AM

    dukemarc says:
    May 8, 2012 9:58 AM
    Any truth to the rumor that Spielman handed Longwell a Applebee’s Gift Card as his last paycheck?

    Now that is funny.
    For the uninformed That jerk Longwell said that was the only good place to eat in Green Bay . I hope being Tiger Woods neighbor taught your wife something

  68. thankheavenfornumberseven says: May 8, 2012 10:56 AM

    drewpr says:May 7, 2012 8:30 PM

    lbpackfan says: May 7, 2012 7:19 PM

    Great guy…sad to see. At least he got to a Super Bowl with the first team he played with in his career…………………..

    ____________________________________

    What team would that be? His first season with the Packers they lost the Superbowl.
    ______

    Ummm…Isn’t that what he said?

  69. thankheavenfornumberseven says: May 8, 2012 10:57 AM

    Apropos of nothing, Ryan Longwell’s field goal percentage was 57%.

  70. thankheavenfornumberseven says: May 8, 2012 12:21 PM

    In college, I mean.

  71. stavreafavre says: May 8, 2012 3:46 PM

    Like most of their decisions, this will probably come back to bite Team Heidi.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!