It’s not an uncommon belief in the football world that punters and kickers should concentrate on their jobs, keep their mouths shut and stay invisible.
But some members of the kicking fraternity can’t seem to resist the limelight. The latest instance came Friday, when New York Giants punter Steve Weatherford popped off about Philadelphia Eagles quarterbacks Sam Bradford, Tim Tebow and Mark Sanchez in a radio interview.
Eagles center Jason Kelce returned fire Monday with some spicy language on Twitter, prompting Weatherford to return to the airwaves later in the day — either to clarify or backpedal from his comments, depending on your perspective.
With that in mind, ESPN.com revisits some of the most audacious things NFL punters and kickers have said and done in recent years:
Caleb Sturgis: The Miami Dolphins kicker injured his left quad playing kickball at a team-sponsored event earlier this month.
Spencer Lanning: The Cleveland Browns punter got his face in the way of Antonio Brown‘s foot when trying to stop the Pittsburgh Steelers receiver during a punt return this past season.
Pat McAfee: The Indianapolis Colts punter got into hot water — or more likely cold water — when he was arrested for public intoxication in 2010 after he’d gone for a swim in a city canal.
Jeff Reed: While kicking for the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2009, Reed was cited after allegedly getting into a fight with a paper towel dispenser and cursing out a convenience store employee.
Chris Hanson: In 2003, the Jacksonville Jaguars‘ Pro Bowl punter missed significant playing time after gashing his foot with an ax in a team-building exercise playing off coach Jack Del Rio’s theme of “keep choppin’ wood.”
Mike Vanderjagt: After a 2002 playoff loss to the New York Jets, the Colts kicker took some shots at head coach Tony Dungy and quarterback Peyton Manning. In an interview at the Pro Bowl that season, Manning famously referred to Vanderjagt as “our idiot kicker who got liquored up and ran his mouth off.”
Bill Gramatica: In 2001, the Arizona Cardinals kicker overdid his customary celebratory dance after connecting on a routine field goal, landing awkwardly and tearing the ACL in his right knee.
Sebastian Janikowski: Before he was drafted by the Oakland Raiders, the former Florida State kicker was arrested in 2000 on bribery charges after offering a police officer $300 to release a friend who had been arrested. Janikowski was acquitted by a Tallahassee jury after the defense argued that the native of Poland misunderstood the situation and was still learning English.