Patriots Place Rookie on IR With No Replacement on Active Roster

Getty Quinn Nordin

The New England Patriots have placed rookie undrafted free agent kicker Quinn Nordin on injured reserve, per NFL.com‘s Ian Rapoport.

The Michigan product appeared to beat out Nick Folk for the starting kicker job in training camp, but Nordin wasn’t active in Week 1 and the veteran was the team’s placekicker in the 17-16 loss to the Miami Dolphins.

With Nordin sidelined for 6-8 weeks, it is tough to gauge how much the Patriots will be able to depend on him this season.


Why Nick Folk Will Likely Be the Patriots Kicker All Season

Folk started and played well in Week 1, which essentially had him picking up where he left off after a strong 2020 campaign. If Folk continues to show steadiness, it’ll be difficult for Nordin to supplant him at any time later this season.

Even if Nordin is able to kick in November, imagining Bill Belichick turning the kicking duties over to him seems far-fetched. RotoWire’s Fantasy Football staff seem to believe Folk will be the kicker for the foreseeable future in New England.

With Quinn Nordin (abdomen) ruled out for Sunday’s game against the Jets, look for Folk to be elevated from the Patriots’ practice squad to the team’s active roster ahead of the contest. It’s an assignment that Folk could hold on to in the coming weeks, with Ian Rapoport of NFL Network suggesting that Nordin is a candidate to go on IR. Either way, Folk — who made all three of his field-goal attempts in the the team’s Week 1 loss to the Dolphins, en route to recording 10 points — is on track to kick again for New England this weekend, and likely beyond.

The Patriots plan to be in the thick of things at that point in the season.

If they’re in the playoff picture and Folk has been good, there is no way he’ll be lifted for Nordin unless he’s been injured. While I can imagine Nordin being activated and placed on the practice squad, his chances of being the Patriots’ starting kicker in 2021 are slim.


Quinn Nordin’s Time is Likely in 2022

When the Patriots kept Nordin on the roster and released Folk last month, the move was made to protect the former from being poached by another team from their practice squad. Belichick likely planned this course of action knowing he would play Folk because of his health and experience.

That said, Belichick clearly sees something in Nordin that says he has what it takes to be the Patriots’ kicker of the future. New England is giving Nordin an opportunity to get healthy and to perhaps become the main guy at his position in 2022.

Folk will be 37 in November, so he’s not exactly in the early portion of his career. While it isn’t beyond the realm of possibility that Folk could be effective in 2022, Belichick might prefer the younger, cheaper kicker with the bigger leg.

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