Bills Cut Long Time Kicker Rian Lindell
Even the most accomplished careers eventually come to an end.
Today, the Buffalo Bills released their longest tenured player, K Rian Lindell. Lindell had led the team in scoring for the past 10 seasons and was the most accurate kicker in team history with a FG% of 83.3%. Signed in 2003 as a free agent. He holds the team record for FG% from inside 20 yards (100% T-1st). He also ranks first from between 20-29 yards (95.5%), between 30-39 yards (92.4%), third from between 40-49 yards (68.4%) and first all-time from 50 yards plus (52.5%). The other record he likely would have broken if he had made the team this season was the most prestigous. He needed just 32 more points to surpass the team’s all-time leading scorer Steve Christie (1,011).
In the last two seasons, Buffalo has spent a draft pick on a young kicker. Last years pick, John Potter, initially won the starting kickoff job before losing it back to Lindell and being released in November.
This year, the team drafted Dustin Hopkins in the sixth round. Hopkins has showed that he has the power to kick long-range field goals, but has struggled with consistency. He has also put three of his eight kickoffs through the end zone for touchbacks this preseason and is 4/4 in field goals, though his long thus far is only 39 yards.
Also, props to head coach Doug Marrone for not dragging out the position battle between Lindell and Hopkins. Instead, he called it early and gave Lindell time to sign with another team before the season starts. That’s respect.
And now, on a personal note I want to say good luck to Rian Lindell. He’s been a Buffalo Bill for as long as I can remember and could always be counted on to put one through the uprights. I’ll never forget his game winning kick against New England in September of 2011. It was a 28 yarder as the clock expired to give Buffalo it’s first win over New England since 2001. So I just wanna say thanks, Rian. I hope to see you on the Bills wall of fame someday.
You know he deserves it.
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