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Struggling Jets kicker retires, walks away from $2.3 million

Blake Schuster
Yahoo Sports Contributor

Count the New York Jets among the teams looking for upgrades at kicker these days.

Chandler Catanzaro, 28, has decided to retire and leave just over $2 million on the table rather than spend the season with the Jets.

Catanzaro has bounced around a few teams during his five-year NFL career. After Arizona signed him as an undrafted free agent in 2014, he spent time with Tampa Bay and Carolina as well as one season with the Jets in 2017.

That year he went 29 for 29 on extra point attempts while converting 25 of 30 field goal opportunities — his longest coming from 57 yards out. That would be enough motivation for New York to bring him back on its own, but the kicker has struggled since then.

Last season he went 16 for 20 on field goals and 30 for 35 on point-after attempts. He resigned with the Jets in mid-March without seeing much improvement. He missed two of three extra point attempts in New York’s preseason opener against the Giants and called it quits shortly after.

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - AUGUST 08: New York Jets kicker Chandler Catanzaro (7) during the National Football League pre-season football game between the New York Giants and the New York Jets on August 8, 2019 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ. (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Replacing Catanzaro is Taylor Bertolet, who went 9 for 14 on field goal attempts with the Salt Lake Stallions of the short-lived Alliance of American Football. Bertolet, 26, had previously spent time in training camp with the Jets in 2018 as well as offseason stints with the Rams and Broncos after going undrafted out of Texas A&M in 2016.

He has never attempted a kick in a regular season NFL game.

Catanzaro, meanwhile, leaves football with career earnings of just under $6.5 million in five years. It’s certainly good work if you can find it.

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Blake Schuster is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at blakeschuster@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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