Last season, the Buffalo Bills were reminded of how important a field goal kicker can be in the NFL. Dan Carpenter, who'd been reliable for two years in Western New York, regressed in 2016, as he morphed into a special-teams liability.
Carpenter's out in Buffalo. Stephen Hauschka, former Seahawks kicker, is in. He signed a relatively lucrative deal with the Bills this offseason.
We will track Hauschka's performance all season, frequently comparing it to what the Bills got from Carpenter in 2016.
Here's an examination of how the two kickers fared a year ago.
Field goal percentage (rank out of 33)
- Hauschka: 89.2 percent (6th)
- Carpenter: 76.0 percent (30th)
Field goals 20-29 yards
- Hauschka: 11/13
- Carpenter: 8/8
Field goals 30-39 yards
- Hauschka: 13/13
- Carpenter: 5/5
Field goals 40-49 yards
- Hauschka: 8/10
- Carpenter: 4/9
Field goals 50-plus yards
- Hauschka: 1/1
- Carpenter: 1/2
Hauschka was one of the NFL's most accurate field goal kickers in 2016, and it wasn't an aberration.
In 2015, he ranked third in the league with a field goal percentage of 93.5. The year before that, he finished 18th, and in 2013, the Seattle kicker had the second-best make percentage in the league.
Per Pro Football Reference, Hauschka's career field goal percentage of 87.2 is the third-best in NFL history behind Dan Bailey and Justin Tucker.
Extra point percentage (rank out of 28)
- Hauschka: 82.9 percent (27th)
- Carpenter: 88.9 percent (25th)
Like Carpenter, Hauschka struggled on extra points a season ago. Only Mike Nugent of the Bengals had a worse percentage on extra points.
The year before that, Hauschka finished 26th with an extra point make percentage of 90.9. Interestingly, Hauschka has gone 20 for 20 on field goal attempts between 30 and 39 yards since the extra point was moved back to a 32-yard try at the start of the 2015 season.
Story topics: Stephen Hauschka