With the NFC and AFC Championship matchups set for next weekend, it is a good time to take a look at some of the snapping developments in terms of signings and coaching changes since the end of the regular season.
To date, four snappers have signed reserve/future contracts for next season. The four are Bradley Northnagel (Raiders), Drew Williams (Cardinals), Zach Triner (Packers) and Anthony Kukwa (Chargers).
Another tradition after the end of the season is the coaching carousel, that always has a significant impact on special teams coaches. Among the changes are Tom McMahon, who moves from the Colts to the Broncos after Brock Olivo was terminated. Chris Tabor moves from Cleveland to Chicago and Rich Bisaccia goes from Dallas to Oakland. Jeff Rodgers (Chicago), Brad Seely (Oakland) and Larry Izzo (Houston) are also looking for new positions.
It is a new year and the 2017 NFL regular season is complete. The final week of the regular season marked the debut of Jeff Overbaugh. Overbaugh snapped well for the Vikings in place of Kevin McDermott, who was placed on injured reserve. Earlier in the week, Overbaugh was signed after a workout that also included veteran snapper Justin Drescher.
The Packers added Zach Triner to its practice squad a few days ago. Now that the team’s season is over, he will likely sign a contract for next season in Green Bay. Lost in the shuffle of last week’s snapping news was a workout the Bucs conducted with snappers Nolan Frese and Drew Williams.
In addition to any new snapper signings, Longsnap.com will be covering the various special teams coaching changes, veteran free agency and the top prospects for the NFL Draft during the coming weeks.
Zak DeOssie finished the season with six tackles, four of which were solo tackles, and is the champion again for snapper tackles in punt coverage. This is his sixth title in the last seven seasons. In 2015, when he did not finish first, DeOssie missed the last few weeks of the season. In Week Seventeen, Jon Condo (Raiders) and Rick Lovato (Eagles) added solo tackles, while Colin Holba (Jaguars) added an assist.
The final NFL Long Snappers Chart for the 2017 season is below.
2017 NFL Season
Week Sixteen brought another prominent use of an emergency snapper, as Kevin McDermott of the Vikings was injured late in the first half against the Packers. Tight end David Morgan served as the snapper the rest of the game and did well under the circumstances.
The Vikings think that McDermott may be able to return for the playoffs but are expected to add a veteran after a workout today that will include Justin Drescher. Last week, the Rams worked out Jeff Overbaugh and Drew Ferris with some kickers and punters due to an injury to their kicker.
The STATS FCS All-America team was announced this week and includes the best of the FCS long snappers. James Fisher of North Dakota State was the first team snapper, followed by Hunter Winstead (Liberty) and Brandon Godsey (South Dakota). All are seniors.
Four snappers has tackles in punt coverage this week, led by Jonathan Weeks (Texans) who had a solo and assisted tackle and Mike Windt (Chargers), who had two assisted tackles. Josh Harris (Falcons) and Zak DeOssie (Giants) each had a solo tackle.
The NFL Long Snappers Chart after Week Sixteen is below.
2017 Week Sixteen
Week Fifteen is done and included a rare “triple play” of blocks, as the Eagles blocked an extra point, field goal and punt against the Giants. Cardinals snapper Aaron Brewer returned to action and did well in his return from a broken wrist. Thomas Hennessy of the Jets. who missed most of last week’s game with a concussion. was able to snap this week.
Phil Steele continues to be one of the few college football writers to show love to long snappers. As part of his support for the snapping position, Steele has just released his All-American team that has 1st-4th teams, including snappers. Tanner Carew of Oregon, who will also play in the Senior Bowl, is the 1st team snapper, followed by Wyatt Pfeifer of Western Michigan, Ike Powell of Auburn, who is also a Senior Bowl invite, and the 4th team snapper is Wesley Horky of Oklahoma.
This week, the East-West Shrine Game, which has not typically invited snapping specialists to its college all-star game, changed course and added snappers Drew Scott (Kansas State) and Hunter Bradley (Mississippi State).
Four snappers, Andrew DePaola (Bears), Clark Harris (Bengals), Nick Sundberg (Redskins) and Tyler Ott (Seahawks), recorded solo tackles in punt coverage this week.
The NFL Long Snappers Chart after Week Fifteen is below.
2017 Week Fifteen
Week Fourteen brought another snapper injury and an emergency replacement pressed into action. Thomas Hennessy of the Jets suffered an apparent concussion against the Broncos in the first half, forcing tight end Eric Tomlinson to assume the snapper role. Tomlinson did a decent job in relief.
Justin Drescher, who filled in for injured Aaron Brewer in Arizona since Week Five, was released yesterday and Brewer is set to resume snapping duties for the Cardinals.
In college a news, Ike Powell of Auburn will join Tanner Carew of Oregon as the two snappers in the Senior Bowl next month. Both are the top snapping prospects for the Draft.
Four snappers recorded tackles in Week Fourteen, with JJ Jansen (Panthers) and Zak DeOssie (Giants) tallying solo tackles and Hennessy and John Denney (Dolphins) adding assisted tackles.
The NFL Long Snappers Chart after Week Fourteen is below.
2017 Week Fourteen
Week Thirteen marked the return of tackles by snappers in punt coverage. After two unprecedented weeks of no tackles, Justin Drescher of the Cardinals added a solo tackle and client Casey Kreiter of the Broncos added an assisted tackle. LP Ladouceur of the Cowboys had a fumble recovery in the Thursday game.
Prior to Week Thirteen action, Jeff Overbaugh worked out for the Chargers and Overbaugh and Andrew East had tryouts with the Redskins yesterday.
The NFL Long Snappers Chart after Week Thirteen is below.
2017 Week Thirteen
Week Twelve was a quiet one in the snapping world. For a second consecutive week, there were no tackles in punt coverage by an NFL snapper. The only team to workout a snapper was Jacksonville, who had client Derek Hart in for a tryout earlier in the week.
The NFL Long Snappers Chart after Week Twelve is below.
2017 Week Twelve