Signing Joey Slye shows Jaguars aren't thrilled about the kicker position

• The Jaguars have added competition to their kicker room by signing Joey Slye

Dec 24, 2022; Santa Clara, California, USA;  Washington Commanders place kicker Joey Slye (6) kicks
Dec 24, 2022; Santa Clara, California, USA; Washington Commanders place kicker Joey Slye (6) kicks / Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

The Jacksonville Jaguars thought they had landed kicker Wil Lutz in free agency but he backed down at the last minute. It took them a bit but the Jags have finally added another kicker. This time, it's Joe Slye, who will most likely compete with incumbent Riley Patterson.

Slye inked a one-year deal with the Jags, per multiple reports. A bit later, the team announced the signing. On a related note, Jacksonville also announced signed outside linebacker Travis Gibson, who spent the 2023 season with the Tennessee Titans.

After going undrafted in 2019, Slye signed with the New York Giants but was waived before the regular season. He was quickly picked up by the Carolina Panthers, where played two seasons. He then spent time with the Houston Texans and the San Francisco 49ers before joining the Washington Commanders late in 2022. Last season, the Virginia Tech product completed 79.2 of his attempts and went 3-of-5 in field goals of 50+ yards.

Early in free agency, the Commanders signed Brandon McManus, making Slye expendable. Coincidentally, McManus was the Jaguars' kicker last year. He got off to a strong start but struggled as the season progressed, missing a key field goal against the Cincinnati Bengals. Two weeks later, he failed two attempts against the Baltimore Ravens.

To make matters worse, the Jaguars brought McManus in because of his ability to routinely nail field goals of 50 yards or more. However, he went 5-of-10 in such attempts. The team's brass quickly moved to replace the veteran kicker, and it seemed like they had found their replacement when they agreed to terms on a three-year deal with Wil Lutz. However, the signing wasn't official, so he had a chance of mind and returned to the Denver Broncos.

Joey Slye gives Jaguars options at kicker, but he's not the long-term answer

The Jaguars have had a revolving door at kicker since moving on from Josh Lambo in 2021. Matthew Wright got the nod that year. The Jags gave him his walking papers the following offseason and tried out Andrew Meavis and Ryan Santoso before they settled on Riley Patterson.

Although Patterson finished 2022 strong and even made the game-winning field goal in the wild card round of the playoffs, he lacked the strength for kickoffs and long field goals. This is why they traded him last offseason and brought in Brandon McManus.

Slye won't probably end the Jaguars' kicking woes but he will at least provide competition while finding the long-term answer at the position. Incumbent Riley Patterson should be the favorite right now but the Jaguars aren't thrilled with him. Otherwise, they wouldn't have traded him last year or made a run for Wil Lutz.

Expect the Jaguars to look for kickers during or after the draft. And if they don't find someone they're confident in, they'll probably turn to the waiver wire.

For whatever reason, the Jaguars have struggled to find consistency at kicker the past three years. Joey Slye won't probably stop the carrousel, but he at least gives them an option in case the team's brass is unable to find a much better alternative in the upcoming months.

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