3 free-agent kickers the Carolina Panthers could sign in 2021

(Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) Daniel Carlson
(Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) Daniel Carlson /
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Carolina Panthers
(Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports) Joey Slye /

Which free-agent kickers could the Carolina Panthers sign in 2021 free agency?

The 2020 season wasn’t the best for Carolina Panthers kicker Joey Slye, to put it mildly. There’s hardly such a thing as a perfect kicker, but after a season where the team lost seven games by eight points or less, finding an upgrade at the position may be worthwhile.

Slye, who will be going into his third season, is still very young. Known for having a “big leg”, the 24-year old kicker made only one of his six attempts from 50+ yards this season. The costly misses kept the Panthers from stealing points when the offense needed them badly.

The former Virginia Tech Hokie was 28 of 30 on all field goal attempts under 50 yards and 33 of 36 on PATs.

Still, the Panthers did re-sign Slye at a modest price tag. But the jury is still out as to whether or not he can hold down the spot long-term considering the type of season he had and his age.

Carolina Panthers could bring in another kicker during free agency.

When free agency arrives on March 17, Scott Fitterer and Matt Rhule will have to decide whether or not 2020 was simply a sophomore slump for their kicker. His numbers as a rookie don’t jump off the page and while he did improve his field goal and extra point percentages in 2020, his touchback percentage dropped from 94 percent to 88%.

Most of the fanfare will be on how the Panthers address questions at quarterback, tight end, linebacker, safety, and cornerback. But there are some tantalizing options on the free agency market at kicker too.

Here are three worthy candidates who can take over for Slye in 2021.