Steelers sound open to dumping their kicker after disastrous game from Chris Boswell
The Steelers could have a new kicker when they take the field on Sunday against New England
After getting another ugly performance from Chris Boswell on Sunday, it appears the Steelers are now mulling over the possibility of dumping their kicker.
During a press conference on Tuesday, Steelers coach Mike Tomlin admitted that the team would be "exploring" its options at kicker this week after Boswell missed two field goals in a 24-21 loss to the Raiders.
"We acknowledge that Chris has struggled to find consistent footing," Tomlin said, via the team's official website. "We're willing to explore options that give us the very best chances of that ball going through the uprights this weekend. That being said, those options include Chris. This time of year, we're cognizant of what's available. The prudent approach is to include Chris in those options, and that's what we intend to do."
Although Boswell could keep his spot on the roster, the Steelers haven't wasted any time trying to replace him. According to NFL.com, the team brought in Kai Forbath and Matt McCrane on Wednesday to compete with Boswell for the kicking job.
Boswell has hit just 62.5 percent of his field goals on the season (10 of 16) and most of his misses have come in key situations. Against the Raiders, Boswell missed a 39-yard field goal in the second quarter and a 40-yard field goal on the final play of the game after he slipped on the field.
Boswell also missed a 42-yard field goal in overtime during the Steelers' 21-21 tie against the Browns in Week 1.
Overall, five of Boswell's six misses have come in games that the Steelers didn't win and his 62.5 percent conversion rate is dead last in the NFL among kickers who have 10 or more attempts. Boswell is also hitting just 88.6 percent of his extra points (39 of 44), which ranks 28th in the NFL through 14 weeks.
"His performance merits us turning stones over and looking at our options," Tomlin said.
If the Steelers do move on from Boswell, it would be costly. The kicker signed a four-year, $19.2 million extension in August and if he were to get cut, the Steelers would have to eat $4.8 million in cap space for 2019.
The Steelers gave Boswell an extension after he a big year in 2017, where he earned his first Pro Bowl nod by connecting on a 92.1 percent of his field goal attempts, which ranked sixth in the NFL.
No matter who the kicker is, there's going to be a lot of pressure on that player this week, and that's because the Steelers have a huge showdown against the Patriots on Sunday.
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