Just one day after releasing the team’s long-time kicker, Garrett Hartley, the New Orleans Saints have announced the signing of Shayne Graham.
The 36-year-old Graham has been in the league since 2000, when he began his career with the Saints, but was cut in the preseason. He most recently kicked with the Houston Texans last season.
He has made 245-of-287 (85.4 percent) of his lifetime field goals, with a long of 55 yards.
Graham was one of five kickers brought in to work out in November after Hartley went through a slump. Payton said he seemed stronger and more accurate than the other kickers, which earned him the nod.
Hartley was a big part of the Saints’ playoff success a few years back, especially when he kicked a field goal in overtime to propel the Saints to the Super Bowl. But kickers will have really great years, and they will have really poor years as well. Hartley’s consistency issues were one of the main reasons the team released him.
New Orleans will be Graham’s ninth “home” in the NFL, following stints in Buffalo, Carolina, Cincinnati, New England, New York (Giants), Miami, Baltimore, and Houston.