Commentary

Ranking the Punters: Lechler is No. 1

The Oakland Raiders' Shane Lechler is the top punter in the NFL

Originally Published: August 26, 2011
By Matt Williamson | Scouts Inc.

After watching games and breaking down film, Scouts Inc. has evaluated and graded more than 2,500 NFL players heading into the 2011 season. Here's how the punters stacked up.

Let's clear this up quickly. Shane Lechler is the greatest punter to wear a Raiders uniform, which might make him the greatest the position has seen. Really.

Like grading kickers, judging a punter's greatness is not necessarily an easy thing to do.

Weather has a ton to do with it, as do the opportunities. But one thing that differs from kickers to punters is that every team actually wants an athlete at the punter position.

It can be a huge help with wayward snaps, trick plays and potentially game-saving tackles as the last layer of defense. Few seem to realize it, but right now some exceptional athletes are playing the position.

1
Shane Lechler
80
AGE: 35
DOB: 8/7/76
HT: 6-2
WT: 225
POS: P
Punts 77
Avg 47
Long 68
TB 4
IN20  27
Player Analysis

Lechler has a strong leg and the ability to place his punts in the corner when near the 50-yard line.

MORE ANALYSIS

He has solid mechanics with a high, fluid follow-through and does a good job of getting the ball out quickly. He is athletic enough to adjust to slightly off-target snaps and holds for points after touchdowns and field goals.

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2
Andy Lee
76
AGE: 29
DOB: 8/11/82
HT: 6-2
WT: 180
POS: P
Punts 91
Avg 46.2
Long 64
TB 12
IN20  34
Player Analysis

Lee has developed into one of the better punters in the league. He is a right-footed punter who generally takes a hitch plus two steps to get the ball off and shows good rhythm and a nice, extended follow-through.

MORE ANALYSIS

He is a good directional punter and gets good height and hang time when kicking away. He has excellent hands when having to adjust or react to slightly off-target snaps and is the holder for PATs and field goals.

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3
Dustin Colquitt
75
AGE: 29
DOB: 5/6/82
HT: 6-3
WT: 210
POS: P
Punts 88
Avg 44.4
Long 72
TB 10
IN20  33
Player Analysis

Colquitt has a strong leg and good athleticism that allows him to react and adjust to slightly off-target snaps. He is a left-footed, two-step punter who gets the ball off quickly and shows good leg extension on his follow-through.

MORE ANALYSIS

He does a good job of getting height and hang time and can hit the coffin corners.

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4
Donnie Jones
75
AGE: 31
DOB: 7/5/80
HT: 6-2
WT: 225
POS: P
Punts 94
Avg 45.5
Long 63
TB 4
IN20  32
Player Analysis

Jones has handled all the punting for the Rams in the past four seasons. He is left-footed and has excellent leg strength but has struggled with consistency throughout the course of his career and tends to hit more line drives than you'd like.

MORE ANALYSIS

He did improve his hang time in 2010 and is getting better at hitting the coffin corners when near the 50-yard line. He has good hands that allow him to react and adjust to slightly off-target snaps and holds for field goals as well as PATs.

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5
Brian Moorman
69
AGE: 35
DOB: 2/5/76
HT: 6-0
WT: 172
POS: P
Punts 75
Avg 42.4
Long 61
TB 7
IN20  17
Player Analysis

Moorman's overall production slipped a bit in 2010. He has solid mechanics and is normally a consistent performer.

MORE ANALYSIS

He has big-time leg strength and is a good bad-weather punter, which is huge in Buffalo. He can directionally punt when the situations dictates it. He is effective at pinning opponents inside the 20-yard line.

CLOSE ANALYSIS


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