The Lions may have given LA Rams their next free-agent target

Michael Badgley Detroit Lions
Michael Badgley Detroit Lions / Nic Antaya/GettyImages

When the LA Rams opened 2023 Organized Team Activities (OTAs), they had set up a competition for their starting kicker role between undrafted rookie kickers Christopher Dunn from North Carolina State and Tanner Brown from Oklahoma State. While undrafted kickers, both rookies were among the nation''s most accurate college placekickers, and the Rams special teams felt special again.

The Rams roster soon shrank by one place kicker, as the Rams soon released Christopher Dunn, and subsequently assigned the starting placekicking duties to Tanner Brown, the lone remaining kicker on this roster. While that certainly simplifies the workload of new LA Rams Special Teams Coordinator Chase Blackburn, it complicated the Rams' 2023 season.

Is it wise to place all of their hopes into an untested rookie as their kicker?

Should LA Rams look at Lions recently release kicker?

I am never one to question competition. The more competition in training camp, the better. And perhaps it's that appreciation of more competition that keeps me scanning the waiver wire for released veteran players who may be upgrades, or at least competitive, for the Rams roster as training camp nears.

One such veteran is former Detroit Lions veteran kicker Michael Badgley, who was recently released and could heat up the kicker competition once more. Originally a kicker for the Los Angeles Chargers, Badgley has competed in the NFL for five seasons and for five different NFL teams.

While he has never boasted a particularly strong leg, he did make 11 of 14 field goals in 2022 at a distance of 40+ yards. Unfortunately, he struggled at kickoffs, averaging just 39 yards per kickoff in five attempts with just one touchback.

In his rookie season, Badgley made 93.8 percent of his field goal attempts, including an impressive six out of seven from 40+ yards. The following year, he averaged well over 60 yards per kickoff in 11 attempts. So he has shown NFL power in the past.

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While there are no guarantees that Badgley could wrest the job from Tanner Brown, why not set up some good ole fashioned competition and let the winner claim the role? After all, this is the NFL, and competition is the name of the game.