How is the fourth-best punter in NFL history not on an NFL roster?
Today, I was researching online to find out what punter leads all punters in yards per punt and I found a website called Pro Football Reference and you know what I found? The fourth best punter according to this stat is Marquette King. King is only 31 years old. He is also waiting for a phone call.
So I reached out to him because I wanted to know if he was still interested in playing the NFL.
Marquette’s answer was “absolutely”.
So I sit here wondering why the only black punter on the entire list of punters in the top 50 is still at home. Many are not going to like my opinion on this, but someone has to say it.
If you do not know Marquette King is a black punter, and he is one of only five to ever do it in the NFL.
There are punters in the NFL right now that are struggling badly. The Dallas Cowboys will never get rid of Chris Jones, but he is averaging 39.6 yards per punt right now. That is not very good. As a matter of fact there are only 10 players in the entire NFL that are averaging 46.7 yards per punt or higher at this time.
Marquette’s longest punt in a game was 72 yards and has only had three of his punts ever blocked. When you look at how many he has landed inside the 20, he has landed 163 of them. So roughly 37 percent of all his punts have landed inside the 20-yard line.
The crazy thing is Marquette has never stopped work. He went to the XFL recently and played there for St. Louis, and he too led XFL in punting.
Marquette is a player I always like to take credit for discovering. I remember doing articles on Marquette when he was coming out of college. Fort Valley State! Man, the kid was fun to watch, he hit a bomb against Bethune Cookman for 80 yards.
So here is my fun story on Marquette.
Marquette attended the HBCU football classic in Atlanta Georgia. It was an All-Star Game created for HBCU players at one point, and all the players were on the field running drills. The NFL scouts were all sitting on the bench watching the defensive players when they heard a loud thumping sound. The scouts turned around to see Marquette punting the ball. All the scouts pulled out their stopwatches and began timing him. He was hitting 5-second punts. Immediately, he was surrounded by NFL teams wanting to talk to him.
Marquette has never changed, he still has a BOOMING FOOT. This is from this week.
You see, I do not know why Marquette King is not in the NFL. To be honest there is not a real reason why he shouldn’t be in the NFL. You cannot say it is because he cannot punt. You cannot say it is because of his skills. You cannot say it is because no one needs a punter because he is better right now on the street than 2/3’s of the NFL and that is statistically speaking. I mean so what is it? Is it because he once danced and received a flag for celebrating a huge punt? Well, I have searched the internet up and down and I have found three unsportsmanlike conduct penalties in his entire career. So three penalties in 463 career punts? One of them saved a touchdown on Eric Weems. YOU NEED A BETTER EXCUSE.
In 2014, King led the league in punting yards and total punts, with 4,930 on 109 punts. These numbers also set single-season Oakland Raiders franchise records.
I do not know what else you want from the kid. I asked Marquette another question today. I said if a team called you today and said they would sign you to their practice squad would you go. His answer, “Yes, I just want a chance to prove myself.”
Remember this, the best punter since 1937, according to Pro Football Reference was Shane Lechler. Shane Lechler is no longer in the NFL, but guess who Marquette beat out in Oakland to become the Raiders punter?
I do not know why Marquette King is not on a roster, but if these punters keep punting the way they have this year, I hope he receives a call. I know people do not like the dancing and happiness when you rocket a ball 80 yards in the air, but let me say this, kicking and punting requires confidence. If you start losing your confidence, you will lose your job. Your kicker and punter have to know they can change the game, if they question themselves one time, the game is over. Why do kickers go in slumps? CONFIDENCE, there is a reason Marquette King is a great punter, he is confident and he knows he can play at a high level. I wish my team would call him because he is a beast!
NFL scouts, my message to you, SIGN MARQUETTE KING. He is likely better than your punter right now. There I said it. If you bring him in for workout, I bet he will out punt your punter. I am willing to bet he would out punt any punter in the league right now. Am I a fan? Yes, I am but I also scout football. I don’t scout feelings! SIGN HIM!