In what could be the theme of the year and the upcoming offseason, Dustin Colquitt represents the notion of not knowing what you have until it’s gone. Jamie Gillan was ousted from his job as the team’s punter because Colquitt had just one good game. Since that game, he’s been absolutely awful. In just about every game he’s punted for the Browns he gave the other team stellar field positioning at least once. That’s something Gillan wasn’t known to do. Sure, he was never an elite punter, but he rarely shanked one.
Now, normally I wouldn’t come down on special teams as I feel they’re unfairly scrutinized and are too hastily given up on. Case in point going with Chase McLaughlin over Cody Parkey. Last year, Parkey had 86.4% completion of his field goals and 91.5% of his extra points. McLaughlin is at 71.4% and 97.1% comparatively. For what it’s worth, Parkey kicked 14 more extra points than Parkey.
In this case, however, the Browns opted to replace a fine punter with one who they thought was better, only to now have one that is effectively much worse. Like with McLaughlin, they downgraded because they thought they could do better.
Gillan was averaging just shy of 44 yards per punt before he was released, Colquitt is at 42 yards per punt. Colquitt was awful yesterday and a clear example of a mistake signing. Gillan never should’ve been out of a job, not off of one game. This was an overreaction and it may have bitten them in the butt.