Ryan Wright will have at least one punt of 50 yards
There were plenty of issues for the Vikings last season, but punter didn’t seem to be one of them. Jordan Berry was claimed off waivers shortly after training camp and had a solid season, averaging a career-high 46.5 yards per punt. He also averaged 40.8 net yards per attempt, the second-highest mark of his career.
Those numbers indicated that Berry would be a lock to be the Vikings punter in 2022 but undrafted free agent Ryan Wright has stuck around throughout the preseason. Special teams coordinator Matt Daniels initially declared that there would be a “punt off” to decide who would win the job, but the competition ended early when the Vikings released Berry on Thursday.
That leaves Wright, who now must prove he belongs on the roster.
Wright was a standout at Tulane, averaging 44.5 yards per punt in four seasons with the Green Wave and 47.5 yards during his senior season. While punting doesn’t require a major transition to the NFL, Wright’s biggest issue may be becoming the holder for Greg Joseph.
Daniels admitted on Wednesday that Wright’s ability to hold on the field goal unit would be a factor in the decision. After insinuating that the team would consult Joseph to see if he was comfortable with either punter, the Vikings went ahead and gave Wright the job.
Kevin O’Connell seemed non-commital when talking to reporters on Thursday but if Wright can show off his massive leg, the job should be his.