An online brigade of Pittsburg Steelers fans took to the internet, suggesting that former BattleHawks punter Marquette King is the perfect replacement for Dustin Colquitt. Colquitt signed for the Steelers at the start of the season, which ended his 15 years tenure with the Kansas City Chiefs. However, the season has not favored him, after netting the worst NFL 37.1 average yards per punt. According to Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin, such performance was not satisfactory, signaling a looming change. This prompted thousands of Steelers fans to make their suggestions through Twitter.
Former Denver Broncos and Oakland Raiders punter, Marquette King, became a favorite replacement if the Tweets from Steelers fans are anything to go for. The BattleHawks signed Marquette during the supplemental round of the XFL draft towards the end of last season.
Some History on Marquette
The suggestions by Steeler fans certainly hold some truth. Marquette King has shown exemplary performance during his seven years in the NFL. He spent the first six years playing for the Raiders before signing a $7 million contract with Broncos in April last year. During the period, King boomed punt after punt, averaging at 46.8 yards per try. This made him lead the league in 2013, with an average of 48.9 units per yard. Unfortunately, a thigh injury took a toll on him, shortening his time in Denver.
Nonetheless, before getting into the injured reserve and leaving the club, King has an average of 44.1 yards per unit in the four games he played. He also averaged 39.7 yards per unit. Due to his injuries, Colby Wadman replaced King, which made him a free agent. XFL’s St. Louis Blackhawks drafted him last November but ended in the street once more after the league was folded in April due to various contract revisions. He recorded an average of 45.7 yards with 19 units.
Between 2013 and 2017, King averaged 46.8 yards per unit, with longs reaching 70 and 72. This is probably what made him the 2nd team all-pro in 2016. He leveled with other greatest punters in the NFL history, including Lechler, with a career average of 47.6, Reggie Roby with an average of 43.3, and Jeff Feagles with 41.6.
Despite the call out by fans, the suggestions may end unheeded. This comes after reports from various sources that Steelers could bring back Jordan Berry, who initially was a punter at Pittsburgh from 2015 to 2019. Berry finished the NFL season as the 19th best punter, averaging at 40.9 yards. His general career average is 44.2, which is probably what makes him a perfect option for the Steelers.
That said, there is no doubt that King is a top talent. However, the kicking game in professional football is often finicky. Many guys have the skill to kick and punt but are not on the NFL roster currently. Besides, the first week of action often has a lot of missed kicks and sub-par punting.
Whether King will be picked by the Steelers or will remain a free agent this coming season, the former BattleHawks favorite appreciated the suggestions by reaching out to Steelers fans. He tweeted his appreciation post, alluding that he was thankful for the fans and hopeful that something will come up.
Regardless, it is brilliant that King is optimistic and trying to get back to the NFL. Over time, he has proven that he can pant well and continues perfecting his craft. If by any chance, he doesn’t sign to Steelers before the XFL season starts, most of his fans are hopeful that they can have him back at BattleHawks next season. That said, Pundits often recommends that King and other NFL players consider engaging a legal team to work on their contracts to avoid the seasonal contractual terms.