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Wed. Jun 19th, 2024

Report: Detroit Lions asked for UFL kicker Jake Bates to be reworked

By meerna Jun12,2024

According to NFL insider Aaron Wilson, the Detroit Lions are one of several teams that have requested UFL kicker Jake Bates to be trained. The remaining teams are the Commanders, Packers and Ravens, according to Wilson.

Bates was a sensation in his first season with the Michigan Panthers. Bates kicked the ball at the Lions’ Ford Field and gained notoriety after kicking the game-winning 64-yard field goal in the season opener. He has since continued a strong regular season, making 17 of 22 field goals and earning All-UFL honors for the 2024 season. His only misses on the season were 39, 51, 53, 58 and 62.

The Lions reportedly inquired about Bates earlier this season, and it appears that interest has continued over the last two months.

If the Lions acquired Bates, he would be part of the kicker competition that has intensified during spring training. Incumbent Michael Badgley added some power to his kicking, but his performances were inconsistent during situational drills. Undrafted rookie James Turner impressed with a noticeably stronger leg and greater consistency during team drills.

β€œ(Badgley) has worked hard to extend his reach, maybe a little further than he already has, and he’s looking good doing it. That’s why I’m excited about him,” special teams coordinator Dave Fipp said this spring. β€œOn the other hand, James (Turner) has a huge leg. I know he doesn’t hit a million long balls, but he has plenty of legs. Very very good. Much better than average. Anyway, it’s very encouraging.”

The Michigan Panthers were eliminated from the UFL playoffs on Saturday after losing to the Birmingham Stallions 31-18. In this game, Bates scored 4 of 6 points, missing 44 and 51 (the 44-yard kick was blocked).

By meerna

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