Zane Gonzalez – Carolina Panthers K
Let’s get the most obvious one out of their first.
The Carolina Panthers have some ongoing problems surrounding their kicking. They put all their eggs in Joey Slye’s basket this offseason, but a poor preseason from the former Virginia Tech player meant he was waived in favor of Ryan Santoso.
This, of course, last just one game before Santoso was removed from the equation, meaning the Panthers didn’t have to give up a seventh-round pick to the New York Giants.
Zane Gonzalez was next man up, obviously. The kicker was brought in for a tryout earlier this offseason before signing ahead of Week 2, but a complicated opening performance against the New Orleans Saints left more questions than answers.
Gonzalez gets another – and perhaps final – shot at proving his worth at the Houston Texans. Another inconsistent display might see Carolina look at alternative options with a mini-bye week before their game at the Dallas Cowboys.
This is something the Panthers could do without. They’ve gotten away with misfires over the first two weeks because the team’s been so far in front, but that won’t be the case if the margins are finer against better opposition.
What’s at stake for Gonzalez won’t go unnoticed by the player. Whether he can bounce back in the right fashion is another matter entirely.