The Carolina Panthers brought in a trio of kickers for visits on Thursday that included former Panthers kicker Chandler Catanzaro.
Catanzaro, Lirim Hajrullahu and Louie Zervos were all brought in for a look, via the league transaction wire.
Catanzaro, a five-year NFL veteran, appeared in four games for the Panthers in 2018. He converted all five of his field goal tries and seven of his eight extra point attempts during his short stint with the team. He would then appear in nine games for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers the rest of that season and has not been on a regular season roster since. He has also kicked for the Arizona Cardinals and New York Jets.
Hajrullahu has spent six seasons kicking in the Canadian Football League and was a two-time All-Star before signing with the Los Angeles Rams for training camp this summer. The Rams released him at the end of camp.
Zervos is an undrafted free agent rookie out of the University of Ohio.
The Panthers could be looking at kickers for two reasons.
Current kicker Joey Slye missed a 54-yard game-winning field goal attempt against the Minnesota Vikings last week. He is 24 of 31 on the season (77.4 percent) and has converted 26 of 28 extra point attempts. While the average isn’t great, two of those kicks have come from 65 and 67 yards and were low percentage attempts at the end of games.
The trio of kickers could serve as direct competition for Slye’s job if the Panthers are feeling less confident about his performance. However, with the COVID-19 situation leaving the Denver Broncos without any quarterbacks last week, the addition of another kicker to the practice squad could serve as an insurance move should Slye end up on the COVID-19 list and be forced to miss a game.