The Detroit Lions are still trying to figure out their kicker situation at the bye week. The team announced on Tuesday evening that they have signed Sam Ficken to their practice squad.
Ficken’s addition comes after a turbulent week for Lions kickers. Detroit cut Dominik Eberle after he missed two extra points and sent a kickoff out of bounds against the Seahawks. The next day, the Lions signed Michael Badgley to the practice squad before waiving Austin Seibert a few days later. Seibert had been battling a groin injury and missed a few key kicks in Week 3 against the Vikings.
The Lions went into Sunday’s game against the New England Patriots with Badgley as their practice squad-elevated kicker, but the Lions never even used him—not even on kickoffs. In fact, coach Dan Campbell opted to pass on a 50-yard field goal attempt early in the game, stating that the team didn’t trust him at that length.
“There’s a line that, ‘Okay, we are very comfortable with field goal, we are not comfortable with field goal,’” Campbell said on Monday.
So it appears Badgley will be in competition with Ficken over the next two weeks. Ficken has a total of 28 game appearances in the NFL, split between the Rams (2017-18) and Jets (2019-20). For his career, he’s just 35-of-54 (72.9%) on field goals and 49-of-56 (87.5%) on extra points.
He hasn’t been all that reliable beyond 50 yards, making just four of nine attempts from that distance with a long of 54.
Ficken most recently spent time with the Tennessee Titans in 2021. He made the 53-man roster as the starter, but was placed on injured reserve just days before the team’s first game with a groin injury. He was, ironically, replaced by Badgley. Ficken would last just one game with the Titans after missing an extra point and a 46-yard field goal in Week 1.
So... yeah, the Lions are still figuring this thing out.