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some Scifres Love

Discussion in 'Chargers Fan Forum' started by TheLash, Jul 14, 2008.

  1. TheLash

    TheLash Well-Known Member

    Aug 8, 2006
    its from 2007 I found while digging for a better scifres photo

    Chargers, punter Scifres a surprisingly happy marriage
    Jan. 10, 2007
    By Clark Judge
    CBS SportsLine.com Senior Writer
    Tell Clark your opinion!

    Look, I don't like hearing about punters, either. Not unless it's someone named Ray Guy.

    But you can't ignore the obvious, and the obvious are the numbers put up this season by San Diego's Mike Scifres: Of his 69 punts, 35 -- or more than half -- landed inside the 20; 27 were returned; and only two made it into the end zone.

    Are you kidding me?

    San Diego punter Mike Scifres has put more then half his punts inside the 20-yard-line. (Getty Images)
    I haven't seen a portfolio this astounding since I took a look at the Yankees payroll. So Scifres isn't among the league's top punters -- they're ranked by gross averages. But look at the guy's net, and it all begins to make sense.

    Not only is it only 3 yards fewer than his gross, it's eighth-best in the NFL. Where in the name of Ralf Mojsiejenko did the Chargers find this guy?

    Ask general manager A.J. Smith. No, better still, ask his son.

    That would be Kyle, who, as a freshman wide receiver at Youngstown State, told his Dad about a Gateway Conference punter that bowled him over. According to A.J., Kyle rarely makes recommendations to his father. In fact, he couldn't recall him making more than a handful, but he does remember what he said about Scifres.

    "He said, 'I'm telling you, Dad, this guy is rare,'" said Smith. "I told him, 'Thanks for the tip.'"

    Then A.J. moved on to scouting Scifres, viewing tapes and talking to coaches. And when he was finished he became the second member of the Smith family to enlist in the Mike Scifres Fan Club. In fact, Smith thought so much of the guy he made the Western Illinois punter his fifth-round draft pick in 2003, even though he already had Pro Bowl punter Darren Bennett on the roster.

    "He was just too good to pass up," Smith said.

    Which is why Smith is one of the game's top evaluators. Look what he has done for the Chargers since stepping as general manager: he drafted Shawne Merriman and Luis Castillo in the same round and he engineered the Eli Manning deal, giving up the Ole Miss quarterback for Philip Rivers and three draft picks. Two of them were Merriman and kicker Nate Kaeding. The third he traded for offensive lineman Roman Oben, who became a starter.

    He traded for wide receiver Keenan McCardell, he drafted tackle Marcus McNeill and he found linebacker Shaun Phillips

    Then there's Scifres, and I know there's a temptation to include him among Smith's less distinguished draft choices because of the position he plays. But don't make that mistake. Frankly, he's one of A.J.'s bull's eyes, and Smith knows it. Heck, everyone with the Chargers knows it, too. Without Scifres, they're not where they are now.

    In a game of field position, Mike Scifres is more than someone with a strong leg; he's a weapon who can determine field position. He can kick the Chargers out of trouble, he can pin opponents in holes, he can reduce the league's most dangerous returners to fair-catch specialists.

    "He's immensely talented," said Smith. "He has the hang time, the distance and the consistency. He can boom punts that hang in the air with no returns. He's a boomer with purpose."

    Listen, I don't know what happens this weekend when New England comes to town, but I'll tell you one area I do know the Chargers will dominate -- and that's the punting. The Patriots are down to their third punter in Todd Sauerbrun, and that's not good -- especially when you look at his net of 33.5 yards against the New York Jets and how it stacks it up against Scifres' record.

    New England is famous for having all of its bases covered, but Smith has the edge here. And it wasn't a product of luck; it was by design. He drafted Scifres when he had a punter, much as he drafted Rivers when he had a quarterback. At the time, it didn't seem to make sense. I mean, an 8-8 team saving a roster spot for a punter that spent his rookie season as the team's kickoff specialist?

    Well, the move paid off. Big.

    "He's an awesome, awesome talent," said Smith. "In my entire NFL career, he's the most talented punter I've ever seen."

    Except he didn't see him first. His son did.

    "Yeah," said Smith, "and I told him to feel free to give me more tips."
    • Like Like x 1
  2. sdbound

    sdbound Well-Known Member

    Jul 21, 2006
    Good piece, thanks.
  3. Buck Melanoma

    Buck Melanoma Guest

    Our not-so-secret weapon. :yes:
  4. Ride The Lightning

    Ride The Lightning Join the Dark Side, we have cookies.

    Aug 15, 2006
    Scifres rules.
  5. AnteaterCharger

    AnteaterCharger Calibrating Bolttalk, Podcast by Podcast Staff Member Super Moderator Podcaster

    Jan 19, 2006
    bout time he gets love considering most of the media is too busy kissing Shane Lechler's butt for so long
  6. BlueandGold

    BlueandGold The Oracle

    May 22, 2006
    Sci-Fi is a WEAPON.

    I honestly though we were in for a letdown after Darren Bennett.

    It also helps that the crafty ol' Aussie taught the kid with the cybernetic leg a few tricks!
  7. RM24

    RM24 BoltTalker

    Jul 27, 2007
    Sci-Fi has GOT to make the Pro Bowl this year man! About time the boy gets some props!

  8. 17Rocks

    17Rocks Well-Known Member

    May 12, 2006
    Scifres is the best punter in football bar none.:yes:

    Hey which game was it that he hit that one that landed like on the two yard line at the hash mark and rolled out of bounds? Fickin' amazing kick. I can't remember ever jumping up from the couch over a punt!
  9. Retired Catholic

    Retired Catholic BoltTalker

    Aug 3, 2006
    Scifres is the best special team weapon in the league. Announcers and pundits all get distracted by the guy with the biggest leg, although during games, announcers who are familiar with Scifres give him his due. Thing is, he's still young enough to be around a good deal longer.
  10. TheLash

    TheLash Well-Known Member

    Aug 8, 2006
    he and I think KO temed up to pin Indy at their own 1 in that playoff game. thaty was mighty sweeeet:abq1:

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