In a move that became less of an “if” and more of a “when” after Friday night’s game, the Redskins have announced the release of Shayne Graham this morning.
Head coach Mike Shanahan said going into the game that the Graham duo would be alternating opportunities on field goals, extra points and kickoffs. In his two field goal opportunities, Shayne punched the balls wide left and wide right, respectively.
When that rotation ceased in the third quarter, the writing was on the wall.
After the game, Shayne was one of the first players off the field and didn’t hang around the locker room to chat. To be fair, I checked with long snapper Nick Sundberg to make sure that nothing had happened on the snap to alter the kicks.
“Honestly, I didn’t see anything, because my head comes up so much before Sav even catches the ball,” he said. “There wasn’t anything on the snap that I know of. We’ll go back and look at the tape to see if there’s anything I can tweak to try and make a difference or try to make things easier.”
“If there is anything.”
In other words, Sundberg was trying to leave that possibility open, but there wasn’t anything on the snap or the hold. Shayne just missed badly on both kicks.
At the end of the day, the 11-year veteran remains one of the most accurate kickers in NFL history, and this week in Washington will hardly tarnish his legacy. By cutting the cord now, both Shayne and the Redskins can find other options before the regular season begins.
Whether either chooses to do so remains to be seen.
Graham Gano passed the first test with flying colors (Burgundy and Gold, to be exact), and is currently the only kicker in Washington.
Tags: graham gano, kicking, nick sundberg, shayne graham, special teams
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