Miami Dolphins

What’s the far edge of kicker Andrew Franks’ range? Maybe 70 yards

Andrew Franks has made just 7 of 10 field goal attempts this year.
Andrew Franks has made just 7 of 10 field goal attempts this year. AP

Andrew Franks had another kick blocked Sunday, but the day wasn’t a complete disappointment.

He also did something remarkable.

Franks was able to reach the end zone on a kickoff from the 20 after a 15-yard celebration penalty on Miami’s preceding touchdown.

Put another way: Franks kicked the ball 82 yards in the air -- off a tee.

Which prompts the question: what exactly is the far end of the range?

Would the Dolphins be willing to attempt a 70-yard field goal in an end-of-half or end-of-game situation? Special teams coordinator Darren Rizzi didn’t dismiss the hypothetical.

“It depends on the conditions and all that,” Rizzi said. “I’ve seen [Franks] in warmups kick 64-yarders in the middle of the field. Again, he does have a strong leg. We actually tried a 64-yarder in practice yesterday that had about five or six yards left on it. Again, depending on the situation and depending on the conditions and all that stuff … last play of the half, last play of the game, things like that.”

Of course, Franks should probably start making the short ones before we dream about shattering the NFL record (the longest made field goal ever is 64 yards, done by Matt Prater).

Franks has missed three of 10 field-goal attempts this season, including two which have been blocked. And those blocks were on Franks, not the protection; Rizzi said his second-year kicker needs to get the ball up higher.

“I have a lot of confidence in Andrew,” Rizzi said. “We believe in our guy.”

Here’s why: Between extra points (now attempted from 33 yards out) and field goals, there have been 79 missed field goals in the league this year. Combining point-after attempts and field goals, Franks has been good on 20 of 23 kicks.

“The bottom line is I’m his biggest critic,” Rizzi added. “He knows he’s got to make those shorter field goals and fix the problem and elevate the ball more on those shorter field goals. With that said, it's not just an issue that's happening here. Andrew's a talented guy.”

Adam H. Beasley: 305-376-3565, @AdamHBeasley

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