December 2, 2012; Denver, CO, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers kicker Connor Barth (10) during the first half against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports
The Denver Broncos have reportedly signed veteran kicker Connor Barth, formerly of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, according to The Denver Post’s Mike Klis.
On the heels of Klis’ report came a report that the team had waived Brandon McManus, so the thought that the Broncos might keep both guys didn’t come to pass.
Barth is the most accurate kicker in Tampa Bay Buccaneers history, something that will hopefully provide a major upgrade to an area of the Denver Broncos that has been sorely lacking this season. The Broncos decided in the pre-season to trade for McManus, who has a huge leg but couldn’t consistently put it between the uprights.
A great kickoff specialist, McManus could potentially latch on with another team or possibly get a shot again this coming season in camp after showing some promise in the preseason with the Giants and even at times this season with the Broncos. Still, the Broncos couldn’t afford to let him slowly develop. They need consistency now. That’s why Barth was brought in, along with Jay Feely, to become the new Broncos’ kicker.
Barth won the job, and the Broncos will move forward excited to have him on board. He missed all of last season with a foot injury that he suffered playing in a charity basketball game, and was released by the Buccaneers prior to the start of the season in favor of a rookie.
At 28 years of age, Barth is a known commodity and short-term fix but also has the potential to be a long-term solution for the Broncos as well. That would be the best case scenario here, as Denver parted ways earlier this season with veteran Matt Prater, who is now kicking with the Detroit Lions.