Photo by Jonathan Bachman
Despite not having found any evidence to support this on the internet, I'm thoroughly convinced that their's some sort of direct correlation between the number of kickers a team cuts and its number of losses. As of right now, the Saints have cut not one, not two, but four kickers to date. The Saints record in that same span? 44.
Of course, there has been extensive work done in the study of kickers. There's a lot to be said about field position and how a team's best defensive player can be it's placekicker. But it's also been proven that just because a kicker has a bad streak with one team (sometimes more) doesn't mean they'll be bad in the long run. But Saints fans only care about this:
Five kickers have played for the Saints since Payton took over as coach in 2006 -- John Carney, Billy Cundiff, Olindo Mare, Gramatica and Mehlhaff. Payton has admitted that he never should have let reliable veteran Carney go after the '06 season, when he tried to upgrade to the stronger-legged Mare.
Carney is now one of the league's most consistent kickers for the NFC East-leading Giants, who have two proven veterans on their roster with Lawrence Tynes recovering from a knee injury. Still, there is no indication that they plan on letting either kicker go, even when Tynes returns.
John Carney? Oh yea, who could forget that guy?