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Posts Tagged ‘Koenen’

Falcons re-sign Clabo and Bryant

July 28th, 2011 Comments off
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Tyson Clabo

ESPN’s Adam Schefter tweets that the Falcons have come to terms with free agent offensive tackle Tyson Clabo. Pat Yasinskas of ESPN also reportsthat the team has re-signed fellow free agent kicker Matt Bryant as well.

Negotiations with Clabo had been ongoing since teams were allowed to begin to contact free agents on Tuesday. Clabo had been pursued by the Buffalo Bills and Seattle Seahawks according to reports, with talks with Buffalo picking up on Wednesday after the Seahawks signed free agent Robert Gallery.

Terms of the deal with either party were undisclosed. It is likely the Falcons reached a long-term deal with Clabo, while settling for a short-term deal with the 36-year old Bryant. Bryant’s re-signing likely ends any possibility that punter Michael Koenen returns to the team. Sixth round pick Matt Bosher, who signed earlier today, pulled double duty as a kicker and punter while at the University of Miami will likely focus solely on punting with Bryant in the fold.

Bryant was perfect on 13 tries in the Georgia Dome last year, and made three game-winning field goals. The Falcons first picked up Bryant late in the 2009 season after struggles with Jason Elam.

UPDATE: NFL.com’s Jason La Canfora reports that Clabo signed a five-year deal worth $25 million, including $11.5 million guaranteed. The deal can max out at $27 million.

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Camp Battles 2011: Special Teams

July 18th, 2011 Comments off

It will be important for the Falcons to settle their issues here in free agency. Both incumbents are impending free agents, although it’s likely only one will be retained.

The likelier of the pair appears to be Matt Bryant who is coming off a resurgent year, hitting three game-winners and being perfect in the Georgia Dome. That likely will leave Michael Koenen out in the cold as the team is ready to move on after an inconsistent season.

The team made plans for this it would seem with the sixth round selection of Matt Bosher. Bosher was a dual threat at the University of Miami, but spent most of his time as a punter. He also served as that team’s kickoff specialist, making him an ideal candidate to replace Koenen in both capacities.

He’ll be pushed by journeyman Ken Parrish, who has a better than average chance due to the lockout and having a bit more professional experience having been with the Eagles the past two off-seasons and working in the United Football League last fall.

It’s Bosher’s job to lose, but it’s definitely a position that the team will keep the best player since field position is very important. This is a position that could be closely scrutinized throughout the summer, as if neither Bosher nor Parrish seem to be pulling their weight, the Falcons could opt to go in a brand new direction.

Long snapper Joe Zelenka is probably safe. The Falcons have brought in undrafted long snappers in recent summers to push him, but it’s probably not necessary this summer since Zelenka has been very consistent for the 21 games he’s served as the team’s snapper.

Eric Weems is unlikely to lose his return job coming off a Pro Bowl year. Although the team may give some opportunities to some of their younger players to see if they can add some value. Jacquizz Rodgers, Andy Strickland, and Dominique Franks could get opportunities. The Falcons may also give top rookie Julio Jones a chance as well. However, the Falcons won’t be looking for someone to replace Weems, instead looking at options in case he goes down with an injury.

Bosher’s Impact in Atlanta

May 22nd, 2011 Comments off
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P Matt Bosher

The Falcons special teams was a major strength throughout most of last season. Kicker Matt Bryant was a pleasant surprise with his clutch shots throughout theyear, hitting three game-winners and going a perfect 13 of 13 at home for the Falcons. Return specialist Eric Weems went to the Pro Bowl, thanks in large part to a pair of touchdowns each on a punt and kickoff, ranking in the Top 5 in both categories in average yards per return (the only player in the league to accomplish that), and his team-leading 16 stops on special teams.

The one player that was not so great was punter Michael Koenen, who had his struggles early in the season. He managed to finish the year strong, but it was probably enough inconsistency to cause the Falcons to pass on re-signing him long-term.

That seems to be the impetus to why the Falcons used a sixth round pick on Matt Bosher in last month’s draft. Bosher both kicked and punted at the University of Miami, but was a better punter there. He also kicked off, something he did with some efficiency during his senior season. That latter ability is likely what attracted the Falcons to him and caused them to draft him over a more highly-rated punter in Florida’s Chas Henry. Henry, although had a big leg, he was much less proven as a kickoff specialist.

Both Koenen and Bryant are going to be free agents, and won’t be affected by the labor issues since both have more than six years of experience. Based off their 2010 play, it makes sense that the team is more willing to keep Bryant despite him turning 36 next week and Koenen still being a very spry 28.

But if Bosher takes over as the team’s punter and kickoff specialist, how good can he be right off the bat?

Read more…

Falcons take Bosher in Round Six

April 30th, 2011 Comments off

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P Matt Bosher

The Falcons drafted Miami punter Matt Bosher with their sixth round pick (192nd overall). Bosher was a productive dual threat punter and kicker while at Miami, but looks like he’ll play the former with the Falcons.

The selection of Bosher could mean the end of Michael Koenen’s career with the Falcons. He hit 85% of his 53 career field goal attempts, and averaged 41.7 yards on 234 career punts. He did a good job with his placement and field position, putting 70 punts inside the 20 and forcing 82 fair catches. He should benefit in transitioning to the NFL by moving from the warm weather of South Florida to the controlled environment of the Georgia Dome.

Click here to read a scouting report on Bosher.

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Falcons keep restricted free agents

April 15th, 2010 Comments off

The Falcons announced today that four of their restricted free agents signed their one-year tenders today. Those players that signed their tenders were offensive linemen Tyson Clabo, Harvey Dahl, and Quinn Ojinnaka, and running back Jason Snelling.

Today was the last day that restricted free agents could sign offer sheets with other teams. No word on whether or not punter Michael Koenen or running back Jerious Norwood signed their tenders, but since they did not sign offer sheets with other teams, they aren’t going anywhere.

Clabo and Dahl will earn $2.521 million in base salary this year. Snelling will make $1.684 million and Ojinnaka $1.176 million. When Koenen and Norwood sign, they will be set to earn $2.73 million and $1.759 million, respectively.

Falcons tender Clabo and Koenen

March 3rd, 2010 Comments off

The AJC reports that Falcons tackle Tyson Clabo and punter Michael Koenen have received their designated tenders as restricted free agents. Clabo will receive a first round tender worth $2.521 million, while Koenen will receive a second round tender worth 110% of his 2009 salary. Because Koenen was tagged with the franchise tag last spring, for a salary of $2.48 million, his tender will cost the team $2.73 million.

The Falcons did not release information as to what their other restricted free agent tenders are, which include running backs Jerious Norwood and Jason Snelling, offensive guards Harvey Dahl and Quinn Ojinnaka, and safeties Antoine Harris, Jamaal Fudge, and Charlie Peprah.

Traditionally, players that have accrued three years of experience are restricted free agents. Which permits them to sign with other teams, but their original team retains the right of first refusal, meaning they can match any contract signed by the free agent in order to retain them, or if they choose not to do so receive compensation in the form of a draft pick based on the level of tender they received. If Koenen and Clabo were to sign elsewhere, the team would receive a second and first round pick, respectively.

But due to the uncapped year that is approaching, players with less than six years of accrued NFL experience will also be restricted, which includes Koenen and Clabo.

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Falcons have decisions to make on restricted FAs

March 2nd, 2010 Comments off

We don’t know quite what the Falcons will do with their restricted free agent tenders. They have until Thursday to make decisions. But here is what I think should and could happen.

Chief among the Falcons restricted free agents are Jason Snelling, Tyson Clabo, Harvey Dahl, Jerious Norwood, and Michael Koenen. The Falcons will almost certainly tender all five of these players.

Because of the rules of the uncapped season, restricted free agents won’t be just fourth year players, instead fifth and sixth year players will also be restricted. And thus, because of their different levels of experience, players will have different tender levels. The way restricted free agency works is that teams tender players at certain levels to determine potential compensation if another team signs them to an offer sheet. If the original team chooses not to match the offer sheet, then they sign with the new team and the original team gets some sort of compensation, usually equaling the original round in which the player was drafted.

Snelling as a fourth year player at a minimum will be tendered with a $1.101 million tender. If that is the case, the Falcons will receive a 7th round pick in terms of compensation if another team was to sign him. But since the Falcons saw how valuable Snelling was last year both as a reserve fullback and tailback, it’s likely they will tender him at a higher level. That next highest level will be $1.684 million, which allows them to receive a second round pick as compensation.

Clabo, Dahl, and Norwood are fifth year players. Both Clabo and Dahl were undrafted free agents, which means if the Falcons tendered them at the lowest level they would receive nothing in terms of compensation. More than likely, the team will tender both starters at the first round level, which for players with their experience would be worth $2.521 million. Norwood as a former third round pick probably can be tendered at the minimum level of $1.176 million.

Koenen is a sixth-year player but since he was tagged with the Franchise tag last year his minimum tender will have to be 110% of what he made last year. The franchise tag for last season was $2.48 million, which means that the Falcons will have to tender him at $2.73 million.

The other restricted free agents on the roster include safeties Antoine Harris, Charlie Peprah, and Jamaal Fudge, and offensive linemen Quinn Ojinnaka. Ojinnaka is the most likely to get tendered because of his value as a utility backup on the offensive line. As a fifth round pick, he’ll likely be tendered at the minimum level for a fifth year player ($1.176 million).

The three safeties will be harder to decide. All three players can contribute on special teams, but more than likely next summer there will only be one roster spot available for any. So more than likely, the Falcons could probably get away with tendering one of them, whichever they see as the most valuable and most likely to win a camp competition, and let the other two walk. That player will more than likely be either Harris or Peprah. The team cut Fudge at the end of last year’s camp, and only brought him back after Brian William’s injury. So they’ve already seen him as expendable. Harris ended the season on injured reserve after tearing a PCL in December. The team can’t cut him because he’s injured, but not tendering him is a way of letting him go without having to come to an injury settlement. But a PCL tear is considerably less devastating as an ACL tear, and usually doesn’t require surgery (see Brian Finneran). Time to rest typically can heal them, so more than likely unless any complications come up during Harris’ rehab, he should be healthy enough to compete for a job come August. Peprah also ended the season injured with a sore hamstring, but that should also be healed in time for OTAs.

More than likely the team will tender both at the minimum level ($1.176 million). That would mean no compensation for Harris because he was undrafted, and fifth round pick for Peprah. If they decide to tender Fudge, it would put him in the same boat as Harris because he too was undrafted.

Koenen signs franchise tender

February 13th, 2009 Comments off

D. Orlando Ledbetter of the AJC reports that punter Michael Koenen has signed his franchise tender. The Falcons officially placed the franchise tag on Koenen on Thursday, which he signed. His 2009 salary of $2.483 million is guaranteed. The tender is a one-year contract, making Koenen a free agent after this upcoming season.

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Falcons to tag Koenen

February 10th, 2009 Comments off

Adam Schefter of NFL.com reports that the Falcons are expected to use the Franchise tag on punter Michael Koenen, according to league sources. Koenen is an upcoming free agent this March. The deadline for when NFL teams can designate their franchise and transition tag free agents is February 19.

If the Falcons were to tag Koenen, he would be the first punter since 2003 to ever receive such a distinction, and the second punter ever. The Franchise tag for kickers and punters this off-season is worth $2.483 million in salary.

By tagging Koenen, the Falcons get right of first refusal, meaning if Koenen were to receive any offers from other teams, they would have the right to match them. Also, if another team were to offer Koenen a contract and the Falcons chose not to match it, they would receive two first round draft picks in compensation. By tagging Koenen it essentially takes him off the free agent market.

Once Koenen signs his Franchise tender, that salary is fully guaranteed.

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Falcons extend tenders to Boley and Davis

February 29th, 2008 Comments off

The AJC reports that the Falcons are expected to extend tender offers to linebacker Michael Boley and defensive end Chauncey Davis. Both players are restricted free agents. According to the report, Boley will receive a first round tender, which will give him a one-year salary of $2.017 million. Davis will receive a fourth round tender, with a one-year deal worth $927,000.

Restricted free agents are allowed to negotiate contracts with other teams, but the Falcons will retain the right of first refusal, which means they can match any offer submitted by another team. If the Falcons match the offer, the free agent is retained. If not, then they have the right to compensation which is determined by the level of the tender. If another team signs Boley, the Falcons will receive a first round pick, and for Davis, a fourth round pick. Davis’s compensation is based on the fact that he was originally a fourth round draft pick for the Falcons in 2005.

There is no official word on what level of tenders (if extended at all) to the Falcons two other restricted free agents: punter Michael Koenen and fullback Corey McIntyre. If the Falcons opt to not extend a restricted tender to either player, they will become unrestricted free agents and are free to sign with any team.

UPDATE: Atlanta Falcons.com indicates that the Falcons have placed a second round tender on Michael Koenen worth ($1.47 million) and the right of first refusal with Corey McIntyre ($927,000). Both Koenen and McIntyre were undrafted free agents. If a team signs McIntyre to an offer sheet, the Falcons will receive no compensation.

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