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Giants sign Punter Steve Weatherford

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Giants sign Punter Steve Weatherford

Post  Pizan on Fri Jul 29, 2011 5:54 pm

Giants sign Steve Weatherford, former Jets punter
Published: Friday, July 29, 2011, 4:22 PM Updated: Friday, July 29, 2011, 4:56 PM
Mike Garafolo/The Star-Ledger By Mike Garafolo/The Star-Ledger

It became clear Thursday, when the Giants were sniffing around Brad Maynard, the team was looking for a veteran free agent punter to replace, or at least challenge, the inconsistent Matt Dodge.

They found one. And they didn't have to look very far.

The team signed five-year veteran Steve Weatherford, according to, well, Weatherford, who wrote on his Twitter account, "I'm on my way back to NYC but my helmet has changed. I'm excited to get the opportunity to help this prestigious franchise win a world title."

Weatherford then added, "Very blessed to help carry on a prestigious tradition in the greatest city in the world. New York Football Giants!!! Go Blue!!!"

Terms of the contract were not immediately available.

Weatherford, 28, spent his first two seasons with the Saints before splitting 2008 between New Orleans, the Chiefs and the Jaguars. He finally found a home with the Jets in 2009 and last year landed half of his punts (42 of 84) inside the 20. He also had an impressive net average of 38.1 yards per punt - a career-high for him.

The Giants now have themselves a potentially reliable presence after dealing with Dodge's bobbles, line drives and mental mistakes at crucial moments (i.e. the DeSean Jackson game-winner). Though the team might allow Dodge to battle it out with Weatherford in the preseason, the veteran's arrival is without question bad news for last year's seventh-round pick.

Lastly, Weatherford acted as the Jets' holder last season, which makes him even more valuable to the Giants. Dodge did not acclimate well to holding for Lawrence Tynes last season (Tynes was 3 for 6 on field goal attempts with Dodge holding) and was eventually replaced by backup quarterback Sage Rosenfels.

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