OXNARD, Calif. – The Dallas Cowboys’ kicking competition took an unexpected turn with the release of Tristan Vizcaino, according to coach Mike McCarthy’s recent announcement. While Brandon Aubrey remains the sole kicker on the 90-man roster, the team may soon consider adding another contender. However, the Cowboys have yet to show interest in recruiting any established veterans like Robbie Gould or Mason Crosby, both of whom are still available. Whether the Cowboys decide to add another kicker soon or wait for teams to reduce their roster further remains to be seen.
Vizcaino’s performance during team drills has been inconsistent over eight padded practices, making 22 of 35 attempts. In the most recent practice on Saturday, he disappointed with four consecutive misses, although one miss was due to a subpar snap. Aubrey, a former member of the USFL’s Birmingham Stallions, has made 26 of 35 attempts overall. However, he struggled in end-of-game situations on Saturday, converting only one of three attempts.
Before the season, the Cowboys expressed interest in two kickers, Jake Moody and Chad Ryland. Unfortunately, both players were selected earlier than the team anticipated, making it impractical for the Cowboys to use a draft pick on a kicker. Thus, the team had to turn their attention elsewhere.
Last year, the team faced a similar situation during training camp when Jonathan Garibay and Lirim Hajrullahu struggled early on. As a result, Dallas made the decision to sign Brett Maher, who set a team record with 137 points in a season. Maher displayed excellent accuracy, making 29 of 32 field goal attempts and converting 50 of 53 extra points. However, his noticeable downfall came in the playoffs against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the San Francisco 49ers. Maher missed four extra points in the wild-card win against the Buccaneers and an additional one in the divisional loss to the 49ers.
As the Dallas Cowboys continue their search for a reliable kicker, they find themselves facing uncertainty once again. While Aubrey remains the only contender at the moment, the team may opt to add another kicker in the near future. The decision to pursue established veterans or opt for younger prospects is yet to be made. Time will tell how the Cowboys’ kicking situation unfolds and if they can secure a consistent and accurate kicker for the upcoming season.