Patriots Bringing in Canadian Kicker to Compete With Chad Ryland

The 25-year-old kicker from Laval is one of the top specialist in the 2024 CFL Draft.
Dec 17, 2023; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; New England Patriots place kicker Chad Ryland (37)
Dec 17, 2023; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; New England Patriots place kicker Chad Ryland (37) / Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports

The New England Patriots kicker Chad Ryland didn’t have the best rookie season in 2023, which also played a part in the team’s struggles as they only won four games.

The former fourth-round pick was outstanding and reliable on extra points as he went 24-of-25 (96%). However, Ryland struggled to kick field goals last season, which is a quick way to find yourself in a potential kicking competition for the next season.

The 24-year-old kicker was 4-for-4 on field goals between 20-29 yards and 5-for-7 between 30-39 yards. The Patriots could not depend on Ryland for longer field goal attempts as he was 7-for-14 from 40-plus yards.

When you have a struggling offense like the Patriots last season, it doesn’t help that the kicker cannot be trusted to make field goals.

That said, New England isn’t resting on its laurels and doing its due diligence at the kicker spot by bringing in potential competition for Ryland. 

Patriots News: New England Invites Canadian Kicker to Rookie Minicamp

JC Abbott of reported over the weekend that the Patriots are bringing in Canadian kicker Vincent Blanchard to rookie mini-camp.

The 25-year-old kicker from Laval could be selected in the 2024 CFL Draft on Tuesday as he’s one of the top specialists in this year’s class.

Blanchard wasn’t completely automatic on field goals at Laval as he made 53-of-71 (74.6%) in 29 games. However, the Laval Rouge et Or standout went 88-of-89 on extra points, made 14 singles, and has some experience punting, which could help him make the 90-man roster for training camp.

Last season, Blanchard was named second-team All-Canadian after making 16-of-17 field goals (94.6%) and was a perfect 20-for-20 on extra points.

It will be interesting to see what Blanchard can do at rookie minicamp next month as the Patriots are not satisfied with Ryland’s performance in 2023.

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