The Impact of a Kicker
Everyone expects the first round pick Wide Receiver or Edge Rusher to come in and have production their first year; but what if I told you a player could signed as a undrafted free agent, and then traded to another team and have immediate record setting impact. Cody Parkey did just that. In 2014 Parkey beat out Eagles current kicker Alex Henery and went on that season to break the current record of 144 points in a year set by Kevin Butler with a stellar 150 points in the 2014 season. Parkey also went on that season to tie Stephen Gostkowski for highest average points per game in 2014. Parkey in the 2014 season had a 88.9 field goal made percentage and was 4-4 from beyond 50 yards, with a career high make of 54 yards. It's safe to say Parkey was on the high road to success. But Parkeys career would hit a snag in 2015 when he suffered a groin injury that limited his playing time to only 3 games. To put Parkeys rookie season into perspective, let's look at his numbers compared to some greats: Stephen Gostkowski in his rookie season had a 76.9 field goal made percentage and a long of 52 yards (was his only from 50 or more that season), and Adam Vinatieri had a 77.1 field goal made percentage and a long of 50 yards (was 1-2 from 59 or more that season) and Parkey compares quite well to these all time greats. What's interesting is the kicker position is starting to get a lot more respect, with the Jets selecting a kicker in the 2nd round (Mike Nugent in 2004) and the Buccaneers trading up to draft Roberto Aguayo this past draft. With so much of the game lying on the shoulders of the kicker (I.E. Blair Walsh Vs the Seahawks, + countless other times it's come down to the kicker in the final seconds) it's no wonder people are starting to eye the position. In 2016 every Eagles fan hopes Parkey can return to his dominant 2014 form.