Mine are that I think Parcells sees this team as a real contender as does not want a chance at winning the big one derailed by a flaky kicker who can’t and doesn’t like to kick off, and whose best field goal kicking days are probably behind him, a kicker who does have previous big misses in the postseason.
Now, I agree with the move if you have a solid kicker in the wings. Which is why I was stunned to learn the replacement was…Martin Gramatica? WTF? Someone not even deemed good enough to currently be in the league? A guy who couldn’t beat out a rookie for the Pats job this year? A guy whose last two near full seasons was 16-26 (61%) and 11-19 (58%), percentages way below Vanderjagt’s current rate? Parcells thinks this is better? I don’t think MG has the leg to be consistent from anything over 40 anymore. What does Parcells see in this guy that none of the other teams do? Or is it just a case of he was tired of Vanderjagt and wanted him gone, regardless if there was someone good available or not? I would have seriously inquired about 50 year old Gary Anderson instead of Gramatica.
Wouldn’t matter if this was about the best player ever to play the game. In a battle of will with Bill Parcel, a player is always going to lose.
Parcells is making a point, and I hope that TO is paying attention to it…
Well, actually I hope he ISN’T, because I don’t like the Cowboys.
My understanding is that Dallas is looking to the pick up the kicker from the Dallas Desperados Arena team. Why switch to Gramatica then? I dunno.
I think the Colts let him go at just the right time.
It’s a bad move for the Cowboys because they signed him to a 3-year deal, so this is going to be a cap hit for them.
Vanderjagt just wasn’t kicking well, and Parcells apparently decided to go with the devil he doesn’t know. This team is the class of the NFC at the moment, and Parcells definitely showed he’s serious.
Let’s hope his abdominal surgery, rehab and any subsequent, presumably adequate, levels of practice have all paid off.
Gee… that’s really asking for a lot, isn’t it?
Not quite. A player who doesn’t have the support of Jerry Jones is going to lose. Jones doesn’t care if Parcells jettisons Vanderjagt - kickers are easy to find. If it came down to a battle between Parcells and Owens, the Tuna would be out on his ass.
I don’t know that Parcells intended this move to send a signal any more than making the change at QB was a signal. He thought it was the best thing for the team, so he did it. Coaches do that with other positions all the time - the only difference is that there’s no reason to carry more than one kicker on the roster.
Future salary cap issues don’t seem all that important when you’ve got a good chance to playing at the end of January. Dallas and the Bears are the two best teams in the NFC right now; the Saints and Seahawks are playing at a level just below them. The way they’re all playing, I’d pick the Cowboys to go to the Super Bowl… It’s easy to rationalize a cap charge of $1.7 million next year when this year’s conference title is a realistic goal.
This has got to be the first time a team has taken a cap hit on a freakin kicker. Parcells is supposed to be interviewed today, I hope he’ll address it in detail.
He only :dubious: got a $2.5M signing bonus, with a three year contract so the excellerated CAP hit isn’t that much. My concern is that Grammatica has been out of the league for 2-3 years. That means that 32 teams could have picked the guy up and none did. The 'boys will almost certainly be screwed because, once again, they are a kicker short. And it has nothing to do with him being a jerk. If he was hitting 85% or his field goal, he could be Stalin and the wouldn’t care, none of the teams would.
My problem is at least one of the five he missed hit the upright, and one other I recall was very close. Granted he almost missed a 22 yarder vs. Tampa Bay, but Grammatica would give his right nut to be 13-18 the rest of the year. If he was missing badly, I could see it. If you just signed Vinatieri, ditto. But unless Parcells caught him shagging Parcells wife, I am
Three of his five misses hit the upright. One was blocked.
The Patriots invited him to camp this year. They ended up going with Gostkowski, the rookie kicker they’d drafted in April.
As far as Vanderjagt’s misses being close… does it matter? Can we toss out the ones he made that were almost misses? He almost missed a gimme in the Bucs game. There’s an X-factor here, which is that Vanderjagt seems to have some confidence issues that are affecting his performance. Nobody knows if he will bounce back from those issues. He wasn’t doing a horrible job, but I can see why Parcells wanted to get rid of him.
Let’s see…while Vanderjagt is having his problems right now, certainly no one can say that Gramatica is clearly the better kicker. So skillwise, it’s pretty much a wash – we won’t know if it was a good decison for a few weeks yet.
The only definite is the salary cap hit, which is a negative for the Cowboys.
So, right now, that’s one “unknown”, and one “negative”. As a Giants fan, I say “good move”!
Stories have it that Vanderjagt was injured during camp - is there some lingering aftereffect?
Gramatica, btw, was perfect in the preseason for the Pats and in his 3 games for the Colts this year.
Well yeah, but for the Colts he kicked a bunch of extra points and one 20 yard field goal. I don’t know how strong his leg is for longer attempts. Also, will he be doing kickoffs as well?
I think if he wants to get liquored up now, even Peyton Manning would understand.
The stat that Vanderjagt is the most accurate kicker in NFL history is thrown around a lot. To me, it doesn’t count if you’ve done most of your kicking over the years in a freaking dome.
I don’t have a problem with the Cowboys cutting Vanderjagt, but I have to wonder about signing Grammatica.
Parcells just admitted that he is not in love with Gramatica, but he was “the best player available”- in other words, the best unemployed kicker in the world, and that is his mind, anyone to him was better than Vanderjagt.