Before the season, the Philadelphia Eagles made the surprising move to cut veteran punter Mat McBriar in favor of last year’s rookie, Chas Henry, who struggled in 2011.
Henry responded by setting a franchise-record for single-game punting average against the Cleveland Browns in week one, but his totals really dropped off against the Baltimore Ravens and Arizona Cardinals in weeks two and three.
He was surprisingly released by on Tuesday, ending his 19-game tenure with the Eagles.
This season, Henry averaged 48.3 yards per punt, the 11th highest total in the league. He also hasn’t kicked any touchbacks. So why was he cut?
Henry’s punts have been returned 14 times for 164 yards. Both totals are worst in the league.
His hangtime on punts has always been an issue, but it’s the worst this season.
That’s why the Eagles brought in McBriar, an experienced, skilled veteran with the seventh best career punting average in league history.
McBriar puts more height on the ball, and the punt returning numbers against him are better than against Henry.
He was only 90 percent healthy in training camp, due to some nerve damage in his left foot that had not fully healed, but he’s either more healthy now, or the Eagles have decided to go with him anyway.
The one issue in the preseason with McBriar was that he struggled a little with holding the ball on field goals. Alex Henery missed a 42-yard field goal in the preseason when McBriar was holding.
Henery and Henry were also best friends, so it will be interesting to see how Henery reacts now that his best friend has been replaced by 33-year old McBriar.