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Lions sign punter who paid his own way to tryout

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At a time when plenty of people without actual football talent (but who may believe otherwise) may be willing to plunk down $275 to try out for the NFL, it’s no surprise that a former college punter made a slightly larger wager on himself.

According to Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press, former Central Florida punter Blake Clingan received a contract offer from the Lions on Tuesday, after footing the bill for his trip to Detroit for a tryout.

“I’ll tell you what,” Clingan told Birkett, “this is the best money I’ve ever spent, without a doubt.”

Clingan, who was in the 2011 draft pool and who previously has a tryout with the Dolphins, struck the ceiling of the Lions’ practice facility “several times” during the workout.

Detrot’s incumbent punter Nick Harris, an unrestricted free agent, isn’t expected to return.  Coach Jim Schwartz has said that the Lions could take a punter in the draft.

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20 Responses to “Lions sign punter who paid his own way to tryout”
  1. ilikekegswithmyeggs says: Mar 5, 2013 9:05 PM

    lol who cares if someone has $275 laying around and wants to use it to try out for the NFL

  2. nflfollower says: Mar 5, 2013 9:16 PM

    “Footed the bill”….aaaah, slightly elementary, but humorous wordsmithery nonetheless.

  3. jgrange says: Mar 5, 2013 9:18 PM

    Congrats to the young man for not giving up and being one step closer to fulfilling his dream. Hope he sticks.

  4. jpb12 says: Mar 5, 2013 9:23 PM

    So he’ll get great hang time on his road punts.

  5. GrossmanDaSexCannon says: Mar 5, 2013 9:24 PM

    ilikekegswithmyeggs says: Mar 5, 2013 9:05 PM

    lol who cares if someone has $275 laying around and wants to use it to try out for the NFL


    That wasn’t the story, the story was someone with $275 laying around tried out AND GOT SIGNED.

    Try less booze with those eggs, bro. It’s nothing ground breaking, but it is still kind of a big deal.

  6. mark8240 says: Mar 5, 2013 9:42 PM

    Hopefully the guy doesn’t get cut before he makes any money.

  7. thegreatgabbert says: Mar 5, 2013 9:47 PM

    Blake was just going to have them send him a marked ball and punt it from Florida to Detroit to show off his leg strength, but was informed that the practice facility was covered by a roof so the ball wouldn’t land properly. So he made the trip in person.

  8. gator2006 says: Mar 5, 2013 9:55 PM

    Exactly. I wish I could pay 275 to interview with Goldman Sachs.

  9. themagicman1223 says: Mar 5, 2013 9:56 PM

    What are you talking about? The guy could clearly kick at least he played college ball and could kick unlike Lauren Silberman.

  10. straighcashhomie84 says: Mar 5, 2013 10:00 PM

    Holy crap $275! That would be a great experience even though that is a TON of money

  11. nyjets1017 says: Mar 5, 2013 10:04 PM

    They wanna charge 25$ to watch the combine or for a cool 275 \$ you can be in the combine. NFL should do the math on that one.

  12. lionsmark09 says: Mar 5, 2013 10:05 PM

    He spent $500 on a plane ticket. It’s a good story though. His 5-plus second hang time is sick.

  13. delmonte55 says: Mar 5, 2013 10:48 PM

    OK we have beat the $275 horse to death.

  14. southbeachtalent says: Mar 5, 2013 11:24 PM

    Those 275 will quickly payout some nice dividends.

  15. canadianbucsfan says: Mar 5, 2013 11:47 PM

    Interesting to see if this guy will become the lions punter. Paying $275 for a job opportunity, might be making much more then that this upcoming season.

  16. briscocountyjr says: Mar 6, 2013 12:17 AM

    He knows it’s the best money he’s spent because he’s going to a team that will need all the punting he can offer.

  17. michfan says: Mar 6, 2013 1:48 AM

    At least the young man paid his own way! Not coming in with a Government Welfare Check!!
    I hope he makes it!

  18. broadstbully says: Mar 6, 2013 6:59 AM

    From what I gather, he paid the $275 for the tryout, but also paid his way to Detroit, which I’m sure included airfare and a hotel. Probably closer to $1000 total. Still, that’s nothing considering the opportunity he was able to take advantage of. Congrats to him.

  19. laxcoach37 says: Mar 6, 2013 9:54 PM

    Bottom line (taking a different line and ignoring the money thing) this guy can punt. He would have madecthevDolphins, but unlucky for him they already have a ProBowl Punter. I saw him kick and he can boom them high, far and was pretty good at inside 20 placement. Great move by the Lions. I hope he fulfils his dreams.

  20. detlions80 says: Mar 7, 2013 5:10 PM

    jpb, nice that you can read… PRACTICE FACILITY.

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