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Kickin' it in Dallas

The obvious; Dallas needs a new kicker. The solution? Free agency. The dilemma? Continue with the present course of getting a no-name nobody and try to make do or go after a free agent who is established. The no-name route seemed to work fine when Steve Hoffman was our kicking coach, but last year it was a disaster that cost us a possible playoff birth.

So let's go with the established kicker and settle the issue for years to come. While Adam Vinateri and Mike Vanderjadt are the big names, Green Bay kicker Ryan Longwell may be the best combination of talent and price. From the Portland Tribune:

Longwell, 31, is a free agent after spending his entire nine-year NFL career in Green Bay. While the Bend native says the Packers are his first choice, a chance to kick in a warmer climate could be enough to lure him away from the frozen tundra at Lambeau Field.

   "I'd love to be back," says Longwell, who this season made 20 of 27 field goals, including 4 of 5 from 50 yards or more. "I passed 1,000 career points this year, and I would love to get to 2,000 in Green Bay. But they have to want me back, and I haven't gotten a call from them yet. I took in the sights and sounds a little more against Seattle, just in case it was my last game at Lambeau."

   Longwell, who made $7.5 million over the last five seasons with Green Bay, will draw high interest from such teams as Dallas, Tennessee, Atlanta and Tampa Bay. The latter is the destination of former Green Bay teammate and best friend Josh Bidwell, who made it to the Pro Bowl for the first time this year in his second season with the Buccaneers.

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