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High School Harry

Raiders sign Nugent

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Report: Raiders waive K Tavecchio, sign Nugen

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The Oakland Raiders surprisingly waived incumbent kicker Giorgio Tavecchio, according to a report late Friday night from the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

According to multiple reports, the team is signing veteran Mike Nugent to take Tavecchio's place on the roster.

The team also has undrafted rookie Eddy Pineiro from Florida at the position.

Tavecchio, who turned 28 last month, went 16-of-21 on field-goal attempts and 33-of-34 on extra points last season, his first in the NFL. He hit three of his four attempts from 50-plus yards, including a pair in Week 1 after taking over for longtime kicker Sebastian Janikowski, who missed the year with a back injury.

Janikowski was allowed to leave in free agency this spring, joining the Seattle Seahawks, but Oakland brought in Pineiro shortly after the draft. Pineiro made 38 of 43 field-goal attempts and 24 of 26 extra-point attempts in two years at Florida.

Janikowski and Tavecchio are both lefties, allowing then-holder (and punter) Marquette King to have a seamless transition when Tavecchio took over just before Week 1 last year.

Pineiro and Nugent are both righties. New punter/holder Johnny Townsend is also a rookie from Florida, where he held for Pineiro in addition to his punting duties. The Raiders invested significantly in Townsend, trading up to draft him in the fifth round in April.

With the move, the Raiders will now have a completely new trio of specialists from last season. King, who was second-team All-Pro in 2016, was surprisingly released amid speculation that the team believed his outsized personality was a distraction. Oakland also declined to re-sign 11-year veteran long snapper Jon Condo, instead signing former Chicago Bear Andrew DePaola for four years and just over $4 million.

Nugent, 36, appeared in four games each for the Dallas Cowboys and Bears last season, making 11 of 13 field-goal attempts and 15 of 17 PATs. He has career accuracies of 81.0 and 96.5, respectively, in 13 seasons since the New York Jets took him 47th overall in the 2005 draft.

 

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