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NFL News: Browns sign K Billy Cundiff

The Cleveland Browns on Tuesday agreed to terms on a contract with Billy Cundiff.

Cundiff, a 6-1, 212-pound kicker in his eighth NFL season out of Drake, has appeared in 106 career regular-season contests. He has connected on 139 of 184 (75.5 percent) career field-goal attempts and 217 of 218 (99.5 percent) extra points. He has scored 634 career points in the regular season and has a career-long field goal of 56 yards. In postseason play, Cundiff is 12 of 14 (85.7 percent) on field goals and 14 of 14 on PATs, for 50 points.

Cundiff re-joins the Browns, where he appeared in five games during the 2009 season. During that time, he made all four field-goal tries, including an 18-yard game-winning field goal with 22 seconds remaining in a 6-3 victory over Buffalo at Ralph Wilson Stadium.

A first-team All-Pro and Pro Bowler in 2010, Cundiff was originally signed by Dallas as an undrafted free agent in 2002 and spent four seasons (2002-05) with the Cowboys. He has also appeared in games with New Orleans (2006), Baltimore (2009-11) and Washington (2012). He spent the 2013 preseason with the New York Jets, where he connected on all three of his field-goal attempts. He was waived on Aug. 28.

[Related: The importance of Trent Richardson]

  • MrCleaveland

    Let’s see if I understand this.

    The Smartest Banner in the Room won’t sign any free agents who are older than 30, so he tells the extraordinarily talented Phil Dawson to go take a hike somewhere else. And it turns out that . . . ta dah! . . . Dawson’s good enough for the defending NFC champions, despite not being good enough for the defending, reigning, and perpetually pathetic AFC North patsies.

    Anyway, when Banner’s brilliance blows up in his stupid face, he panics and . . . wait for it . . . he signs a free agent who is over 30 and who is still hanging around the bargain bin less than a week before the season. Smoove Joe.

    Joe Banner hasn’t been here a year, and yet he is well on his way to Stepienesque dislikability.

    Can’t wait to see those new uniforms, Joe!

  • Wow

    While they had some good signings and an OK draft, I agree. Why let Dawson go at all?

  • Sam

    You are absolutely correct. Also, wasn’t not wanting to waste cap space on a kicker the ONLY rationale for not resigning an aging Dawson? Well, the Browns still have a ridiculous amount of cap space that even the priciest Dawson contract would have hardly dented

    This is certainly the biggest flop of the new regime so far, in my opinion. The only justification for letting Dawson walk would have been making a bigger free agent splash, extending important players (Mack, Haden, etc.), then nurturing a young, dirt-cheap kicker. Really, the exact opposite has occurred, besides the dirt-cheap part.

  • Hopwin

    Dawson didn’t want to stay, its why he got franchised twice and moved his family back to Texas.

  • woofersus

    Yeah, it gets repeated over and over again that they got rid of Dawson or let him go or whatever, but he wasn’t coming back. He wants a chance at a superbowl before he retires and he’s said it pretty openly before. They’d already franchised him twice, and to do it a third time would have cost around $15 million. If he was open to a long term deal it would have already happened under the previous regime that was willing to pay him 8 million in franchise tenders over the past two years. Could they have offered him a huge enough contract to make it impossible to say no? Maybe and maybe not, but dude’s 38, so that would be foolish anyway.

  • RGB

    Bannermetrics at it’s finest.

  • DJM

    Educate yoself son! Ain’t yo say is tru!

  • The fact is the difference between the best kicker in the league and the worst kicker in the league is not a large margin.

    To bring Phil back for the amount of money it would take, especially when it’s likely he wanted out, was ludicrous. If they weren’t bringing back Cribbs, a guy who provided more value than any kicker at a better price, they weren’t bringing back Dawson.

    Sorry, but I’m not going to kill them for replacing the most replaceable piece of the puzzle. But, on that note, BRING BAK VICKERZ!!11!!!1

  • Harv 21

    Fans find this truth impossible to accept because other than the left tackle the best players on the team since ’99 have been solely on special teams: Dawson, Gardocki, Cribbs. If you contemplate this objectively for any period of time – that after 15 drafts we have been left to admire special teamers and a left tackle but zero every down play makers – your fan soul should weep, or explode in holy rage.

    Phil is an excellent kicker. But Phil is a kicker.

  • MrCleaveland

    What irritates me the most is that Banner didn’t even try. Wouldn’t even consider it. Dawson doesn’t fit the demographic, and no exceptions can be made to the almighty Banner master plan.

    For a team that is so heavily dependent on field goals to blow off the best in the business for no other reason than he’s over 30 is arrogant.

    As you may have noticed, the Browns don’t exactly blow other teams away. We have to scratch and claw to eke out every win. And that means long FGs in the swirling wind.

    Just a kicker? I don’t think so.

    Joe the Genius seems to be writing off the season before it even begins. He doesn’t seem to have much of a sense of urgency about winning.

  • Foghorn Leghorn

    Did you even read the replies to your last post? It was laid out very clearly by 3-4 people why he is not on the Browns, why he likely doesn’t want to be on the Browns anymore, and why he was not going to get an offer from us.

  • MrCleaveland

    Yes, of course I read them, thank you very much. I happen to be unpersuaded by their speculation. That okay?

  • Harv 21

    why rage over a kicker? We don’t know that he didn’t try, that Dawson said “I’m gone” and Banner was silent about efforts so as not to get in a quote war he couldn’t win with the team’s most popular player.

    But I agree with your other comments on this thread: certainly Banner counted on trying to groom a young kicker in a non-playoff contention year, only to end up dumpster diving for more long-term dead-ends. And at guard, where freakin Cousins is starting and Lauvao was IR’d for a minimum 8 games to make room for the older kicker, and at CB where Skrine will again be hanging onto guys 6 inches taller and 30 lbs. heavier rather than sprinting the seam with smurfs like him. It sure smells like hubris to moi.

  • MrCleaveland

    I rage, foam, and spittle-sputter because we’re not in a position to throw away talent.

    If Banner (who reminds me of Dilbert’s boss) wanted Dawson, I believe he could have got him.

    In the immortal words of the unemployed Dennis Green, You play to win the game.

    (LOVE the dumpster diving line!)

  • Harv 21

    K, rage away. I have my own dead-certain intuitions regarding behind scene sports things. This just doesn’t happen to be one for me and I think when Phil moved his family it showed he wanted out out out. But I get your overarching frustration: in the end talent wins games, and teams as sucky as this with payroll room and gazzillionaire owners have no business dumping any talent at any position… just win as many games now as you can. Right?

  • MrCleaveland

    Right. I don’t see any downside to keeping Dawson.

    But as the old saying goes, I’m often in error, never in doubt.

  • “For a team that is so heavily dependent on field goals to blow off the
    best in the business for no other reason than he’s over 30 is arrogant.”

    The point is to be NOT this. If they feel that they’ve put together a certain level of talent coupled with a better offense and coaching staff, then this becomes irrelevant unless your worried about point after attempts in that swirling wind.

    Like I said before, the “best in the biz” isn’t far off from the worst in the biz. There is a reason teams like the patriots let kickers like Vinatieri move on, at some point the salary expectations or the franchise numbers surpass the importance of the position.

  • Garry_Owen

    Booo! That was Herm Edwards. Today is just not your day. Buck up, though, you get another shot tomorrow. The category will be “College Coach Meltdowns – Who’s a Man?”
    (Dennis Green’s famous line was “They were who we thought they were. And we let ’em off the hook!”)

  • Garry_Owen

    You once thought you were wrong, but you were mistaken.

  • MrCleaveland

    Green didn’t say that? No wonder he’s unemployed.

  • Harv 21

    winner

  • MrCleaveland

    Hey, as long as there are a couple of Nerd Club members floating around, I’ve been meaning to ask your thoughts on “literally” being the new “figuratively.”

    http://www.cnn.com/2013/08/15/living/literally-definition/index.html?hpt=hp_t3

    Is this the end of decent society as we know it?

  • This situation seems eerily similar to the American cinematic classic Mr. Mom. In which, in case someone inexplicably hasn’t seen it, Jack’s (Mike Keaton) youngest son refuses to give up his security blanket (woobie).

    Phil is simply our woobie and as hard as it may be to say goodbye to his soft and gentle warmth, it’s had to happen sometime. It’s life imitating art at it’s finest.

  • Garry_Owen

    It is. Literally. I can, however, remember the day (many, many years ago) when “ain’t” first appeared in the dictionary. I assumed the world had ended right then and started to hoard Ecto Cooler Hi-C, Now and Laters, and copper BBs (I was very young); but alas, life went on. In fact, I am now somewhat fond of the word, and use it regularly in fun (but only in fun).

    Still, this feels different. More ominous. Concretely foreboding. I just finished reading “The Dog Stars” (a somewhat successful attempt to add to the genre perfected by Cormac McCarthy’s “The Road”), and now I’m of a mind to get a dog, buy a Cessna, form a perimeter around an old airfield, and prepare for the “after after.” What have we become? What’s next? Unabashed cannibalism?

  • mgbode

    duuuuudddddeeeee……SPOILER ALERT!

    😉

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    My woobie was ripped from me at a young age and I’m still bitter about it!

  • Harv 21

    are you trying to enrage me because today you have been enraged by Phil The Toe’s absence? My daughter says “literally” so often (and always erroneously) that I’ve taken away the car. No, I kid, it hasn’t yet come to that. But she has the same explanation as CNN talking head: common (mis)usage wins.

    Here’s my other creepager pet peeve: “I feel like …” As in, “I feel like that argument makes no sense because 2 +2 = 4, not 5.” No, kiddo, your feelings have nothing to do with it. It’s fact-based, not feely-based.

  • mgbode

    I literally feel like Dawson didn’t pass Groza for the scoring title.

  • Harv 21

    see that ^ ? That’s my downtick. We must stop this now.

  • steve-o

    When an organization is 27M under the cap, there is no excuse for downgrading any position, let alone one where we were absolutely set. This team could turn out to be a clutch kicker (and a solid #2 cornerback) away from the playoffs.

  • mgbode

    a world without satire is a world without satire

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    I miss Adam Vinatieri still!!!!

  • maxfnmloans

    that’s a deeeep cut right there. Cleveland’s own Martin Mull at his finest in that flick. Impressive, sir

  • maxfnmloans

    hate to be that guy, but it was Herm Edwards who said “you play to win the game”. Denny Green’s claim to fame was as Cardinals coach :”You want to crown their @$$? Go ahead and crown ’em”

  • maxfnmloans

    I’M 40!

  • MrCleaveland

    Thanks, Max. Nothing wrong with being that guy when the facts are wrong.

  • Garry_Owen

    I hate to be that guy, but “facts” are never wrong. Ask Harv. His daughter probably says stuff like “true fact.”

  • Garry_Owen

    But we haven’t had one of these shindigs for a long time. We’re overdue.

  • MrCleaveland

    Ha haaaa haaaaa! Man did you figuratively nail me to the wall! Well done! I am enlightened, amused, and humbled.

    And ah hell, Cundiff will be just fine.

  • mgbode

    I’m so lost now. Will he literally be just fine or do you feel like he will be just fine?

  • MrCleaveland

    You’re fined.

  • mgbode

    From the context, I assume you are stating that I have been fine in the past. You are correct. I hope to continue to be fine as well. Thanks.