Written by Matthew Cannata
Caleb Sturgis was drafted in the fifth round of the 2013 draft and after beating out incumbent Dan Carpenter in training camp, he had a great start to the season before falling into a downward spiral. However, his inconsistency has led general manager Dennis Hickey and the coaching staff to keep their eyes and ears open when it comes to other kickers around the league and on the free agent wire, even if they don’t bring anyone into camp to compete against him.
"I think the specialist is kind of a different deal. There's always competition there. It just may not be in the building. There's competition around the league. We're always evaluating the specialist's position. That's a fluid situation. Although we may not have anyone here, it's always a fluid situation,” special teams coach Darren Rizzi said. “We may not have a body here in camp doing it, but ... I will say this, I have a lot of confidence in Caleb Sturgis. He's a quality player. But a specialist is a little different than everywhere else. It really is. You don't necessarily have to have a body in camp for those guys to feel pressure."
To help Sturgis simulate game action throughout training camp, Rizzi has taken a new approach and only gives Sturgis one shot to make the field goal. If he misses, he doesn’t get another shot at the attempt.
"It's make or miss," Rizzi said. "You don't get a second chance."
With Rizzi coming out and speaking about this, it’s time to start paying close attention to Sturgis once the preseason games begin. He has a strong leg and a good attitude so hopefully he can get himself back on track.
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