Joey Slye was the second member of Virginia Tech’s 2017 senior class to receive some big news on Tuesday. First, Cleveland Browns guard Wyatt Teller signed a four-year extension, making him one of the highest-paid guards in the NFL.
Also, on Tuesday, Slye signed with the Washington Football Team to be the new kicker, beginning this week against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Slye, the all-time leading scorer at Virginia Tech, originally began his NFL career with the New York Giants in 2019. However, he was released at the beginning of training camp before he signed with Carolina Panthers. Slye spent two seasons with Carolina, making 54 of his 68 field-goal attempts.
He was released this summer. Slye then landed with the Houston Texans after an injury to their kicker. He appeared in three games for the Texans, making four of five field-goal attempts, including one from 56 yards.
Once Houston’s kicker returned, it released Slye. Then, the San Francisco 49ers had an injury to their kicker. In comes Slye. He appeared in three games for the 49ers, connecting on seven of eight field goals, including three over 50 yards, before being waived again when San Francisco kicker Robbie Gould returned.
The next leg of Slye’s tour came in Washington, where he tried out on Monday. Washington released longtime kicker Dustin Hopkins three weeks ago and signed unproven Chris Blewitt to replace him. In two games, Blewitt missed three kicks — all of which were blocked.
Again, enter Slye.
We have made multiple roster moves:— Washington Football Team (@WashingtonNFL) November 9, 2021
-Signed K Joey Slye
-Released K Chris Blewitt
This time, Slye has a chance to stick. Washington is looking for consistency at kicker, and Slye has a history with Washington head coach Ron Rivera.
This feels like the story of the most successful kickers. They bounce around a bit before finding stability. Former Hokie legend Shayne Graham experienced a similar start to his NFL journey before embarking on a long career. Here’s hoping Slye follows in Graham’s path.
The key for Slye is consistency. He has proven he can hit long field goals with ease. However, he missed three of his 12 point-after attempts this season. If he can clean that up, he could be Washington’s kicker for a while.
Congratulations to Joey Slye.