One of the biggest concerns the Arizona Cardinals have is with kicker Matt Prater, who exited the Cardinals-Panthers game on Sunday shortly after his extra point attempt at 10:26 in the fourth quarter.
According to Arizona Sports’ reporter Tyler Drake, Prater is dealing with general soreness. Throughout all of last week, the 38-year-old kicker was practicing with a hip issue which made him questionable entering yesterday’s game.
The 16-year veteran converted both of his extra point and field goal attempts before running back Eno Benjamin, the Cardinals’ emergency kicker, subbed in for him on a couple kickoff and booted one for 61 yards with a tackle soon after.
For precautionary measures and in preparation for Prater’s potential absence, the Cardinals brought in four kickers for a workout.
Ammendola made stints with four different teams, signing with the Panthers, Jets, Texans and Chiefs since last year. He played in 11 games with the Jets in 2021, converting 13-of-19 (68.4%) field goal attempts. He was waived by New York following the additions of Eddie Pineiro and Greg Zuerlein.
The 25-year-old kicker made 3-of-4 field goals and 3-of-4 extra point attempts most recently in the Kansas City Chiefs as he filled in for the injured Harrison Butker before being released following his struggles against the Colts in Week 3.
In 2020, the Indianapolis Colts signed Blankenship as an undrafted free agent out of Georgia. He was pursued heavily by the team and for good reason as he won the Lou Groza Award, which is given to college’s top kicker, in 2019. He beat out Chase McLaughlin for the Colts’ kicking job and proceeded to set a franchise record for most field goals made by a rookie, with 32-of-37 (86.5%) made including 43-of-45 (95.6%) on extra points.
Blankenship struggled quite a bit his sophomore year missing three critical kicks in an overtime loss to the Baltimore Ravens in Week 5 of 2021 and was placed on injured reserve after the game with a hip injury. He was released by the Colts this year following his Week 1 struggles against the Texans.
It looks like the Cardinals are interested in college’s former top kicker as they worked out 2020 Lou Groza Award winner Jose Borregales. He made 20-of-22 (91%) field goal attempts in his lone season at the University of Miami. Before that, his football career began at Florida International University where he scored 281 total points as an undergraduate.
Through two preseasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Borregales converted 2-of-5 (40%) of his field goals with his longest going for 55 yards. He was released in August.
Here is some information about Garibay from Lubbock Avalanche-Journal’s Carlos Silva Jr:
“Last season, he garnered first-team All-Big 12 recognition from The Associated Press after making 15 of 16 field goals — which led the Big 12 and ranked sixth nationally for field goal percentage (93.8%). It included game-winning kicks of 32 yards to beat West Virginia and 62 yards to beat Iowa State, the latter being the longest successful kick in FBS history to decide a game in the final minute.”
On a side note, Eno Benjamin did an excellent job on kickoffs as shown in the tweet below: