What a year for kickers in Dallas. First we start off thinking that we're golden, set to go.
We got the newbie David Buehler ready to handling the kick offs and Pro Bowl strong-leg Nick Folk coming back as the place kicker. The worst things we had to worry about were injuries or maybe the rookie fluffing out, in which case Folk would just go back to kicking short kick offs again.
Nobody expected Folk to struggle the way he did.
Connor Hughes was one of the guys who tried out with Folks replacement, Shaun Suisham late in the year. He's basically got nothing by way of experience having played a year for Philly in the AFL, plus two training camps, one with Pittsburgh and the other with New Orleans.
It would seem that his lack of experience is exactly why he wasn't retained to finish out the year. Instead we resigned Shaun Suisham shortly after the Redskins cut him for missing a couple of field goals. Actually he missed a couple of tries against the then unbeaten Saints, and they had a shot to win it late too. Suisham easily got the blame for that loss.
So now, after being resigned to the team, Hughes is saying that he out-performed all of the other kickers who tried out during the year, and only lost out because of his lack of playing time.
He did go 5 for 5 in exhibition games with the Steelers and Saints, though most were under 30 yards.
The possible Cinderella story Hughes hopes that now he can come in and do a good job for the Cowboys. Maybe he can shore up a kicking game that has been lacking consistency, aside from a great year with folk, for more than a decade.
As for Suisham, this was a return to Dallas for him, and he didn't do so well. He'll be most remembered for missing two field goals, chip shots at that, against the Vikings to stunt momentum in the Divisional round of the playoffs.
So long Suisham…I'm tired of spelling your name.
Read the full story on DMN – Cowboys Kicker: I Outperformed Shaun Suisham in December