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Ravens thinking about life without Cundiff, but with extra cap space

New England Patriots cornerback Arrington and teammate Chung celebrate as Baltimore Ravens kicker Cundiff and Ravens holder Koch show their emotions after a last minute missed field goal in Foxborough Reuters

After a Pro Bowl season in 2010, the Ravens rewarded kicker Billy Cundiff with a five-year, $14.7 million contract extension.

But after a dip in accuracy and a costly playoff miss, they may be planning on how to use the savings by going with a cheaper option.

Cundiff said last night he was “shocked,” when undrafted rookie Justin Tucker took all the kicks in the Ravens’ win against Jacksonville.

“I’m a competitor,” Cundiff said, via the Baltimore Sun. “Anybody who would be OK with not playing — and there are situations where guys are beat up and want to rest — anytime you feel like you’re not getting reps, your competitive side comes out, and you feel like you want to be the one out there kicking.”

Ravens coach John Harbaugh said it was more of an issue of seeing Tucker in a live situation, and Tucker impressed, making all his extra points and a pair of field goals (from 33 and 53 yards).

Pressed on whether there was anything to be read from Tucker doing all the work, Harbaugh replied: “We’ll see. We have to make some decisions here next week, and we’ll have to see how it goes.”

The Ravens have reason to explore their options.

Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun calculates that the team would realize a net $1.2 million salary cap savings if they went with Tucker instead of Cundiff.

Such an outcome was unthinkable a year ago, but since signing the contract, Cundiff turned in his worst season since 2005, and missed a potential game-tying field goal late in the Ravens’ AFC Championship Game loss to the Patriots.

Those kind of kicks linger in the mind of decision-makers, and if they can save money to boot, it could mean Cundiff’s sitting for more than one night.

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24 Responses to “Ravens thinking about life without Cundiff, but with extra cap space”
  1. ravenator says: Aug 24, 2012 2:33 PM

    Tucker is a beast. Watched him hit 60 yd fgs with my field pass. Wont matter though as Flacco will be lightin up the scoreboard all year long.

  2. gtorlone says: Aug 24, 2012 2:34 PM

    I still can’t believe he missed that kick.

  3. flaccodelic says: Aug 24, 2012 2:37 PM

    Do it. The guy is also a rookie, he’s got more years in him.

  4. drew2k2 says: Aug 24, 2012 2:41 PM

    Tucker has all the numbers to take Cundiff’s spot this year but all us Ravens fans remember how we got burned by Hauschka in 2009

  5. geemoney713 says: Aug 24, 2012 2:43 PM

    Ravens wouldn’t have been in the AFC Championship game without Jacoby Jones muffing the punt returns.

    Still proud of them for paying him now, for services from last year.

    Texan’s decision makers probably didn’t forget that and that’s why they let him go.

  6. jessieboom says: Aug 24, 2012 2:47 PM

    Why in the world was Cundiff voted to the Pro Bowl? Even if he had a good year, there are many better kickers in the AFC.

  7. covercorner says: Aug 24, 2012 2:47 PM

    The Ravens will not honor Cundiff’s contract. The Ravens signed a contract and they should pay all the money they agreed to. How is this any different from MJD holding out?

  8. jesse834 says: Aug 24, 2012 2:56 PM

    Why Billy Cundiff got a contract like that is still beyond me, guy is an really average kicker who cashed in big time after a big season.

  9. grabgrabgrab says: Aug 24, 2012 3:01 PM

    “….his worst season since 2005, and missed a potential game-tying field goal late in the Ravens’ AFC Championship Game loss to the Patriots.”

    ***************************

    This kick still gives me nightmares! LOL.

  10. whatchutalkinabouthillis says: Aug 24, 2012 3:09 PM

    Life without Cundiff would mean a Super Bowl berth. Usually I would say he was being unfairly maligned, but that was such a standard kick to make.

  11. drew2k2 says: Aug 24, 2012 3:11 PM

    The Ravens will not honor Cundiff’s contract. The Ravens signed a contract and they should pay all the money they agreed to. How is this any different from MJD holding out?

    *******************************************

    Every player and knowledgeable fan knows that the contract length and overall amount means nothing. Every NFL contract is series of 1 YEAR contracts with guaranteed money being just that, the only guaranteed money.

    If MJD didnt think that his current salary would be enough, he should have demanded a shorter contract and risk being washed up by now. Instead, he opted to take a good deal for the long term.

  12. tomtravis76 says: Aug 24, 2012 3:16 PM

    Wouldn’t have been a need for a kick if Lee Evans would have made the catch on a perfectly thrown ball by Joe.

    Cut Cundiff, having cap space will be a good thing in case of injuries.

  13. rockthered1286 says: Aug 24, 2012 3:16 PM

    covercorner says:
    Aug 24, 2012 2:47 PM
    The Ravens will not honor Cundiff’s contract. The Ravens signed a contract and they should pay all the money they agreed to. How is this any different from MJD holding out?
    ________________________________

    Is this serious??
    You’re right. While we’re at it, every player in the entire league that has ever agreed to a contract and been cut should go ahead and file a greivance with the team because they “agreed to pay them all of the money.” While we’re at it, no more cutting player. Ever again. All contracts are final. Injuries and lack of performance aside.

    Please refrain from posting and embarrassing yourself further.

  14. rockthered1286 says: Aug 24, 2012 3:20 PM

    Let’s also not forget Cundiff’s comments last night. to sum it up, he rambled about his 90% accuracy inside 50 in the past 2 years reg seasons, 13 or 14 in playoffs last 2 years (HUGE MISS) and EPaccuracy. Then said something to the effect of “if that’s not good enough for them, then I’ll take my servies elsewhere.”

    You continue to isolate yourself genius. The fans could have gotten over the miss in time, assuming you performed. But after those comments? Pretty sure you just asked to be cut. Good luck finding a team that need an overage lackluster kicker.

  15. covercorner says: Aug 24, 2012 3:38 PM

    The NFL has pulled the wool over your sheep eyes. Teams cut players before their contracts are up and you are are okay with this. But, when a player holds out you support the team. It’s hypocrisy. If each contract is a series of 1 year contracts, than the players should be able to terminate their contracts as well. It’s only fair.

  16. parkerfly says: Aug 24, 2012 3:47 PM

    Not sure why you’d ever give a kicker a long term, big money contract. They’re too inconsistent from year to year.

  17. stuartscottslefteye says: Aug 24, 2012 4:33 PM

    Cundiff made the Pro Bowl because he nearly broke the record for touch backs. Then the NFL changed the kickoff spot which made that skill irrelevant -then he lost that skill and his kickoffs were short. Then he missed FGs on the road and most attempts over 50. Apparently he changed his technique and has been doing well this preseason – but so has the rookie. If the salaries were the same I’d say flip a coin (even though I’d pull for the rookie since he wouldn’t have that AFC championship miss in the back of his head). However, the salary delta can’t be overlooked and I wouldn’t be surprised if they sat Cundiff so he wouldn’t get injured before being cut.

  18. vincentbojackson says: Aug 24, 2012 6:25 PM

    Cutting him won’t make that devastating playoff loss go away.

  19. gizzmonic says: Aug 24, 2012 6:41 PM

    Even if they cut him I,m keeping my phat head of him… I,m a patriots fan!!! Bha ha ha

  20. willbrownimaging says: Aug 24, 2012 7:02 PM

    Billy Cundiff has missed 68 of his career 200 FG attempts, is set to earn roughly 10x the amount of money over the next four seasons, is getting his assets handed to him in the current kicking competition by more than 10% accuracy, and he choked on the biggest stage of his career ending Baltimore’s season.

    Meanwhile, in addition to dominating at HIS job, Tucker can also punt to the tune of a nearly 40-yard average while attending a major Division I program.

    Baltimore can UPGRADE the position (and add a de facto backup Punter) at 1/10th the cost while at the same time ridding themselves of a mediocre 8-year veteran journeyman and purge the continued stigma of choke-artist hanging around the locker room of the team…no brainer.

  21. ppdoc13 says: Aug 24, 2012 7:11 PM

    Bye bye billy. He has been thoroughly out played by Justin tucker

  22. steelersownyou says: Aug 24, 2012 9:29 PM

    “wide left” was the greatest thing ever! Steeler fans laughed so hard. It as like a huge party. And we hate the patriots! That will tell you what we think of that cest pool & diseased city of baltimore and the cellar dweller Ratbirds team & their dumb fans!

  23. D.j. FIESHMO says: Aug 24, 2012 11:08 PM

    I say, give the new guy a chance. We’ve seen enough of Cundiff. Personally I would have cut him last year after the AFC Championship game. I would of made sure he wasn’t on the plane with the rest of the team on the flight back home. Good rid-dins!!!???

  24. macadamia2010 says: Aug 25, 2012 7:57 AM

    steelersownyou says:Aug 24, 2012 9:29 PM

    “wide left” was the greatest thing ever! Steeler fans laughed so hard. It as like a huge party. And we hate the patriots! That will tell you what we think of that cest pool & diseased city of baltimore and the cellar dweller Ratbirds team & their dumb fans!

    You couldn’t have laughed as hard as we Ravens fans did when your team got knocked out in the first round of the playoffs by the WORST starting QB in the league. And last time I checked, sweeping your team for 1st place in the division does not qualify as cellar dwelling.

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