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View Full Version : Chiefs hope kicking trio can get it together


DenverChief
06-21-2007, 02:56 AM
I searched, but with the creative subject lines it is impossible to tell if it is a REPOST! bite me


Dennis Dillon
Posted: June 19, 2007

So a new long snapper from Montreal, a rookie left-footed kicker from California and a somewhat nouveau holder from Tennessee meet on a football field.

This isn't the start of a bad joke. It's a description of the strangers who were thrust together to form the central nervous system in Kansas City's field goal unit. And if the Chiefs are to tally treys this season, long snapper J.P. Darche, kicker Justin Medlock and holder Dustin Colquitt had better keep bonding -- and relearning their roles.

Compatibility won't happen without a lot of repetition -- and probably a few hitches. Darche, a free-agent addition from the Seahawks, is replacing Kendall Gammon, who snapped seven years for the Chiefs. Medlock was a fifth-round draft pick out of UCLA. Colquitt, a third-year player who also is Kansas City's punter, now must be a mirror image of himself when he holds for placements to accommodate the left-footed Medlock.

"The challenges are going to be there," says Bills special teams coach Bobby April, noting the Chiefs' changes. "But they're not unconquerable."

For a while this spring, Colquitt worked both sides, like a switch hitter in baseball. He set up one way for Lawrence Tynes, a righty who was the Chiefs' kicker the past three years, then set up the opposite way for Medlock. Colquitt put down the ball with his left hand for Tynes and with his right hand for Medlock.

"The first week was one of the harder things athletically I've ever had to do," says Colquitt, whose father, Craig, was a punter and holder on two of the Steelers' Super Bowl champion teams.

The Chiefs became convinced it would be too taxing for Colquitt, who never had been a holder until the Chiefs drafted him in 2005, to continue working with both kickers in training camp. Special teams coach Mike Priefer had nothing against Tynes, who was signed as an undrafted rookie, but he really liked Medlock, who he believed was the most technically sound kicker in this year's draft.

Rookie fifth-round pick or former undrafted free agent? Hmmm. On May 22, Tynes was traded to the Giants.

Colquitt's job became less complicated, but he did get confused at least once. The first time the Chiefs attempted a field goal during team drills after Tynes was gone, Colquitt got down on his right knee. Realizing his mistake, he quickly hopped up and turned himself around.

During the Chiefs' offseason workouts, it has been routine for Darche and Colquitt to connect on as many as 100 snaps a day. In training camp, Colquitt also will use a JUGS machine so Darche doesn't wear down. Everything is done precisely, including the placement by Colquitt.

Persnickety might be too strong of a word to describe Medlock, but he does like the ball lined up a certain way: tilted slightly to the left -- think of the 10 on a clock -- with the laces facing toward Darche or turned a quarter to the right.

Darche, a French Canadian whose initials stand for Jean-Philippe, aptly sums up his and Colquitt's roles. "Obviously, our job is to make life easy for him."

That will help make the Chiefs' kicking game more successful -- and not the subject of a punch line.

Now appearing: The J.P., Dustin and Justin Show

The fortunes of the Chiefs' field goal unit rest in the hands -- and feet -- of this trio.

J.P. Darche

Resume: Was Seattle's long snapper for 102 consecutive games until a hip injury forced him to miss all but the season opener last season. Has a lot of postseason experience, including playing in Super Bowl 40.

Challenge: Never snapped for a left-footed kicker until now. Has had to adjust the rotation and direction of his snaps.

Dustin Colquitt

Resume: Still is developing as a holder. Also is the Chiefs' punter, which gives the team the rare duo of a port side punter and kicker.

Challenge: Must do everything the opposite way from what he was used to doing as a holder. Now kneels on his left knee, is training his left eye to be dominant, holds up his left hand and puts down the ball with his right hand.

Justin Medlock

Resume: Converted 28 of 32 field goal attempts for UCLA last season, including both tries of 50 yards or more. Is consistent in his mechanics: stepping, keeping head down and following through.

Challenge: Must make the big jump from college to the NFL -- with a snapper and holder who never have worked with a left-footed kicker.

InChiefsHell
06-21-2007, 07:41 AM
I dunno, Colquit seemed like a natural holder to me, I don't recall any glaring placement problems for those two previous seasons. Since he's a lefty, maybe this would be more natural for him...

...much ado about nothing. Must be the off season.

King_Chief_Fan
06-21-2007, 08:12 AM
I dunno, Colquit seemed like a natural holder to me, I don't recall any glaring placement problems for those two previous seasons. Since he's a lefty, maybe this would be more natural for him...

...much ado about nothing. Must be the off season.

I agree.
The stage is set though for every missed FG or extra point.....holders fault? long snappers fault? kickers fault?

John_Wayne
06-21-2007, 08:18 AM
I dunno, Colquit seemed like a natural holder to me, I don't recall any glaring placement problems for those two previous seasons. Since he's a lefty, maybe this would be more natural for him...

...much ado about nothing. Must be the off season. He did have one problem that I recall. Remember when the snap was botched, he picked up the ball and ran around like an idiot, tried to throw it with the wrong hand and just about got killed by a freight train. That was Colquitt, right?

Buehler445
06-21-2007, 08:35 AM
He did have one problem that I recall. Remember when the snap was botched, he picked up the ball and ran around like an idiot, tried to throw it with the wrong hand and just about got killed by a freight train. That was Colquitt, right?

Yes, that was Colquitt. I felt bad for the guy. He obviously hadn't been coached as to what to do if he blows it. I think the play was ruled a fumble also to where they lost more yards as a result of the fumble. I can't remember if they scored or not.

Tribal Warfare
06-21-2007, 09:21 AM
Persnickety might be too strong of a word to describe Medlock, but he does like the ball lined up a certain way: tilted slightly to the left -- think of the 10 on a clock -- with the laces facing toward Darche or turned a quarter to the right.


hopefully this isn't Ray Finkle in the making

InChiefsHell
06-21-2007, 10:36 AM
hopefully this isn't Ray Finkle in the making


Heh. Laces OUT! Die Dustin DIE! :)

SNR
06-21-2007, 10:39 AM
Why don't they get Huard to be the holder? If I recall, he held for Olindo Mare in his time at Miami. He'd be more sure-handed than Colquitt and incase of a bad snap, would be a better option to prevent disaster.

BoredomSux
06-21-2007, 10:45 AM
Why don't they get Huard to be the holder? If I recall, he held for Olindo Mare in his time at Miami. He'd be more sure-handed than Colquitt and incase of a bad snap, would be a better option to prevent disaster.

I agree! It makes sense to place a holder in that position that has experience there.

DenverChief
06-21-2007, 11:22 AM
Why don't they get Huard to be the holder? If I recall, he held for Olindo Mare in his time at Miami. He'd be more sure-handed than Colquitt and incase of a bad snap, would be a better option to prevent disaster.
Yeah but if he gets knocked gaga al la TG then who is your backup?

Direckshun
06-21-2007, 11:26 AM
Yeah but if he gets knocked gaga al la TG then who is your backup?
Bingo.

It's not smart to put somebody who could realistically end up under center as your place holder.

Chiefnj
06-21-2007, 11:29 AM
"The Chiefs became convinced it would be too taxing for Colquitt, who never had been a holder until the Chiefs drafted him in 2005, to continue working with both kickers in training camp. "

Good info as to the reason why Tynes was traded.

MVChiefFan
06-21-2007, 11:42 AM
I understand that we've got to get younger but did we really have to spill it over into the long snapping? I know Gammon is old but come on, that guy was money, I didn't ever worry about a bad snap. I'm just a little worried now.

DenverChief
06-21-2007, 11:45 AM
I understand that we've got to get younger but did we really have to spill it over into the long snapping? I know Gammon is old but come on, that guy was money, I didn't ever worry about a bad snap. I'm just a little worried now.


Darche is supposed to be Gammon part duex and even Gammon would have had trouble adjusting to a left footed kicker.....I think this will all work out for the best....I already feel better thinking about Medlock as our kicker

Groves
06-21-2007, 11:51 AM
I'd rather have a right handed holder for a left footed kicker. Yea, I know that righties hold for righties all the time, but still. I want a guys dominant hand to the back. It just seems more natural.

Ok, wait.

All of us lefties catch a baseball in our right hand....hmmmm, maybe it doesn't make a bit of difference.

Carry on.

Buehler445
06-21-2007, 01:07 PM
I understand that we've got to get younger but did we really have to spill it over into the long snapping? I know Gammon is old but come on, that guy was money, I didn't ever worry about a bad snap. I'm just a little worried now.

I was upset to see Gammon go as well. I am sure his age and salary both played a part of it. I know he was a tackling liablility, and he was getting a lot of money for his position. Those were the justifications that I heard.

That being said, I wish they would have bucked up and paid him the money and got better tacklers. He was cash money squared, and he was a great guy on top of it.

InChiefsHell
06-21-2007, 01:12 PM
Where did Kendall wind up? Or did he just cash in and call it quits?

I think he could have snapped in this league for 5 more seasons, and I don't really recall him being some horrible tackler. In fact, I remember him getting a couple last year...:shrug:

Plus he can juggle and that's always a lot of fun at parties...

DenverChief
06-21-2007, 04:28 PM
Where did Kendall wind up? Or did he just cash in and call it quits?

I think he could have snapped in this league for 5 more seasons, and I don't really recall him being some horrible tackler. In fact, I remember him getting a couple last year...:shrug:

Plus he can juggle and that's always a lot of fun at parties...

Birthday = 10/23/68 = 39 years old ancient for a football player especially an interior lineman

InChiefsHell
06-21-2007, 04:31 PM
Birthday = 10/23/68 = 39 years old ancient for a football player especially an interior lineman

Wow. He performed very well for such an old fart. But, youth is the word. I guess it was time.

DenverChief
06-21-2007, 04:34 PM
Wow. He performed very well for such an old fart. But, youth is the word. I guess it was time.

I'm sure his knees are thanking him all the way to the bank

Mr. Laz
06-21-2007, 04:44 PM
i think Gammon was done when he pulled his hammy trying to run fast down on a punt coverage last year.