The Detroit Lions have signed punter Nick Harris after Ben Graham hurt his left calf during last weekend's 44-41 overtime loss to the Tennessee Titans. The Lions put Graham on injured reserve Tuesday|||||||
Detroit kicker Jason Hanson punted three times in Graham's place during Sunday's game, but the Lions decided that wasn't anything more than a short-term solution. They brought back Harris, who was with the Lions from 2003-10 and punted for the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2011.
The Panthers have signed Harris to compete with rookie Brad Nortman. Harris signed a one-year deal.|||||||
The 6-foot-2, 218-pound Harris is an 11-year NFL veteran and played in 11 games with Jacksonville last season. He averaged 42.7 yards per punt. Since beginning his NFL career with Cincinnati in 2001, Harris has placed 239 of his 876 career punts inside the 20-yard line. He spent seven seasons with Detroit and remains the Lions' leader in punts (627) and punting yards (27,073).
The Jaguars signed Harris to replace a struggling Matt Turk.|||||||
Harris has played in 159 games since entering the league as a fourth-round draft pick in 2001. He has a 42.5-yard average on 804 punts. He spent the last seven seasons with the Lions. Turk ranked near the bottom of the league in punting. His performance Sunday against Cincinnati was one of his worst in 16 seasons. He had punts of 32, 23 and 22 yards in the second half, the last two into a stiff wind. The 22-yard punt led to the Bengals' winning touchdown.