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Titans free agent spotlight: K Stephen Gostkowski

Detroit Lions v Tennessee Titans Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images

Over the next few weeks, we’ll be taking a closer look at the Titans’ free agent class. One by one, we’ll provide some basic details on the player before making an argument for both sides — why the Titans should, or shouldn’t re-sign that player. We’ll also offer our final verdict and a prediction to go along with it.

Name: Stephen Gostkowski

Position: kicker

Age: 36

Why the Titans should keep Gostkowski: The Gostkowski era didn’t start well in Tennessee, but he really settled down and turned into a great kicker down the stretch. Gostkowski brought the team some stability to the kicker position after what was an absolute nightmare situation in 2019 that saw the team cycle through several kickers in search for one that could consistently make kicks. Gostkowski struggled within 40 yards at times last year, but he was excellent from 50-plus yards, going 7-for-8 in those situations. The overall numbers don’t look great because of his slow start, but the Titans stuck by Gostkowski and it proved to be the right decision.

Why the Titans should let Gostkowski walk: How long can you stick with a kicker that’s closer to 40 years old than he is 30? Gostkowski made just 18 of 26 field goals in 2020, good for an overall percentage of 69.23%. History suggests that a kicker at this age will only get worse, not better. As for potential replacements, the team recently signed Tucker McCann to a futures contract. McCann spent most of the 2020 season on the team’s practice squad. The team obviously sees him as a potential replacement. That’s the only reason they would invest this much time into him. McCann should get a chance to prove that he’s the long-term answer here.

Final verdict: This is a tough one for me. As the Titans learned the hard way in 2019, it can be tough to find a reliable kicker, and that’s what Gostkowski became once he put his early season struggles behind him. Assuming that he even wants to continue playing, they should give some serious consideration to bringing him back on another one-year deal.

Prediction: Gostkowski returns for one final season.

What are your thoughts? Should the Titans re-sign Gostkowski? Leave your opinion in the comments.