In the National Football League, it has become a common practice for players to sit out camp and hold out for more money when they are unhappy with their current contract. You know, the contract that they chose to sign for big bucks. It was not as if anyone held a gun to their head and forced them to sign for less money than they decided. They put their name to the paper and signed an agreement.
Of course, that means nothing in the NFL.
We have seen some of the top quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers and defensive standouts hold out while hoping to either renegotiate a deal or wait for an increased offer instead of signing a franchise tender. It happened with Chris Johnson last year, and we are seeing it with Drew Brees this season, although the two were really not as similar as they may seem.
But now comes word that one of the players on the Jacksonville Jaguars fully expects to sit out camp while awaiting a new deal. And no, I am not talking about Maurice Jones-Drew, who is arguably the only player on offense who could justifiably hold out because he deserves a better deal.
I am talking about Josh Scobee. He is not a running back. He is not a quarterback. He is not a defensive end, linebacker, offensive lineman or tight end.
Scobee is the Jags’ kicker.
Now I know, kickers still count. We can hate them as much as we want, and most of us do with good reason. But I have to keep reminding people that kickers are people too.
But they are not people who should hold out.
Scobee is a decent kicker. He connected on 23 out of 25 field goal attempts for Jacksonville last season, and has a career field goal made percentage of just under 79 percent. He has come up big for the Jags at the end of a handful of games.
But he is still not someone who should hold out, and I don’t care how far apart the two are in terms of a new contract.
The bottom line is that Scobee is a kicker, and in a way, they are the most replaceable players at any position in the game. They vary from year to year as far as who is the best, and none of them are a sure thing. While Scobee did miss just two field goals last season, he missed six the year before that. He missed 10 two seasons ago, and six again the season before that one. He is far from a lock.
Scobee is 30-years-old and has played in the NFL for nine seasons. But don’t think for one minute that the team will not move further with Brandon Coutu as their full time kicker. Scobee says he doesn’t plan to miss any regular season games, but currently has no intention to show up to camp without a new deal.
He may want to reconsider his line in the sand stance. He is not even close to irreplaceable.
He is a kicker.