Ex-Chiefs P Dustin Colquitt Re-Kindles NFL Career With AFC Squad

Dustin Colquitt Chiefs

Getty Images Chiefs P Dustin Colquitt was the longest-tenured player on roster, dating back to 2005.

A longtime Chief is continuing to keep himself relevant in the NFL, this time by signing with an AFC squad.

Veteran punter Dustin Colquitt has signed to the Cleveland Browns’ 53-man roster, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

Colquitt, 39, was signed to the Atlanta Falcons practice squad on September 21. He was elevated to the 53-man roster on October 5. In six games played this season, he has punted 23 times for an average of 47.7 yards per punt, per Pro Football Reference, while having seven of his punts downed inside the opponent’s 20-yard line.

Colquitt was released by the Falcons on Monday, December 6.

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Colquitt’s 2-Time Pro Bowl Career in KC

Colquitt began his NFL career on rare terms. The Chiefs drafted him in the third round — a very early spot in the draft to select a punter — of the 2005 NFL Draft. Colquitt remained in Kansas City for a total of 14 seasons, registering 1,124 punts, 50,393 yards, with an average of 44.8 yards per punt and a long of 81 yards during his tenure with the Chiefs, per Pro Football Reference. He also had 41.1% of his punts downed inside the opponent’s 20-yard line, per Chiefs Focus.

Colquitt’s name resurfaced within Chiefs Kingdom early in 2021 due to him signing with Kansas City’s practice squad on January 7. The move occurred after the Baltimore Ravens signed punter Johnny Townsend, brother of Kansas City’s starting punt, Tommy Townsend, off of the Chiefs’ practice squad on December 31, according to Fan Nation’s Joshua Brisco.

“Dustin is one of the greatest Chiefs of all-time, and I’m grateful I had the opportunity to coach him these past seven years,” head coach Andy Reid said of Colquitt following his release in 2020, via Brisco. “The longevity of his career here in Kansas City shows you just how consistently he has performed at a high level. Beyond his impact on the field, he was a great teammate and leader. I will always be a huge Dustin Colquitt fan.”

Townsend Has Filled Colquitt’s Roll Well

The departure of Colquitt in 2020 brought about the arrival of Townsend, who signed with Kansas City as an undrafted free agent out of Florida. During the 2020 regular season, Townsend averaged 45.5 yards per punt; his best game of the season came in Week 15 against the New Orleans Saints in which he tallied a career-high three punts inside the Saints’ 20-yard line, earning him AFC Special Teams Player of the Week honors, according to the Chiefs official website.

One of the worst outings in Townsend’s rookie season was in Super LV against the Buccaneers, in which he averaged 36.6 yards per punt on three total punts, per Pro Football Reference. However, he has put the terrible outing behind him and has put forth another strong effort in 2021.

In 12 games played this season, Townsend has punted the football 30 times and is averaging 48.4 yards per punt, which ranks 8th in the league, per the NFL’s official website, and has had 15 of his punts downed inside the opponent’s 20-yard line.

Townsend was named the AFC’s Special Teams Player of the Month for November. During the month, he punted 10 times, with six of them downed inside the 20-yard line and averaging 54.9 yards per punt.

Townsend reacted to being named the conference’s best special teams player for the month of November.

“Yeah so it’s kind of funny. I saw it when I was on my way in the building in the morning. I didn’t see any social media notifications or anything, but my oldest brother, Clay, sent me one of the pictures of it, a screen shot to our family group text. As soon as I saw it, I was so happy, I was ecstatic,” Townsend said during his press conference on Friday, December 3 about when he found out he had been nominated.

“I mean, obviously it’s one of the top awards you can get during the season and it was such an incredible feeling to see all my hard work really paying off. A couple weeks ago I was fortunate enough to get player of the week versus the Packers and had a really good game then. Just a lot of work has been going into it the past five, six weeks and it’s awesome to see it paying off.”


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