Perhaps best known for being blown up by the late Sean Taylor during the Pro Bowl, Bills punter Brian Moorman faces a more usual threat as he prepares for his 12th season with the team.
As Alper pointed out in today’s one-liners, undrafted rookie Shawn Powell hopes to knock Moorman off the roster.
Powell isn’t a “token leg” whom the Bills have brought in to share the load during offseason workouts and training camp, per Mark Gaughan of the Buffalo News. “I just know that he was one of the higher-rated punters out there, and the two times he punted for us this weekend he did a very, very good job,” Bills coach Chan Gailey said, via Gaughan. “So he’s put himself in a position to compete for the job, for sure.”
“My agent felt like this was the best opportunity,” Powell said. “Moorman’s a great punter. He’s been here 12 years, and just being able to learn from him will be great for me.”
And then once Powell learns how to properly punt from Moorman, Powell can try to boot him from the roster.
It won’t be easy. Moorman had a career-high 48.2-yard average in 2011, and he has been to a pair of Pro Bowls.
Still, the fact that Moorman’s job may be in jeopardy proves that, when it comes to punters and kickers (and, more recently, running backs), the parts are often interchangeable.
Even if the Bills decide to go with Powell, Moorman won’t be out of work for long. The interchangeable nature of the kicking business means that, if only one team views him as an upgrade over the current punter, he’ll get another chance.