The New York Jets lost their NFL preseason debut to the New York Giants and also lost their kicker Chandler Catanzaro in the process. A day after the team’s loss to the Giants, veteran kicker Chandler Catanzaro, who missed two extra-point attempts in the loss, told his coaching staff he was retiring. Coach Adam Gase said Catanzaro, 28, revealed his plans the day after the NFL preseason game.
“He came in Friday morning and told me he was done, he was retiring,” Gase said.
Due to Catanzaro’s retirement, the Jets hosted a handful of free-agent kickers, eventually signing Taylor Bertolet, who was on their 2018 training camp roster.
“When I finished my career at Clemson, playing in the NFL was just a dream,” Catanzaro wrote on his Instagram account. “After five years in the league, it’s time to move on. I can’t say I ever thought I would’ve been a kicker, but I’m thankful that kicking chose me.”
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For his part, Gase was happy that Chandler Catanzaro told him his plans in the preseason instead of waiting for the regular season to start.
“I appreciate the fact that he came in,” Gase said. “He could’ve easily rode it out, kind of see what happens. I appreciate him doing that at that time and just being straight with me.”
Despite Gase’s comments, the Jets can’t be happy with how things have gone with the kicking position. The team had a Pro Bowl kicker last season in Jason Myers, but they decided to let him walk in free agency instead of getting involved in a bidding war. Myers eventually agreed to a four-year, $15.5 million contract with the Seattle Seahawks, who guaranteed $5.5 million in the first year. Chandler Catanzaro will leave money on the table.
Instead of having the reliability of a Pro Bowl kicker, the team now has to hope that Bertolet can provide some consistency at the position.
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