In an expected, but still emotive and stirring move, the Jacksonville Jaguars announced the release of kicker Josh Lambo on Monday, ending the long-time kicker’s tenure with the team.
The Jaguars were more or less backed into a corner with Lambo following the veteran’s struggles to start the season, struggles that have forced Lambo to miss the final three games.
In his place, new kicker Matthew Wright kicked a pair of 50+ yard field goals in the final four minutes of the Jaguars’ 23-20 win against the Miami Dolphins, including a game-winning 53-yard field goal on the final play of regulation to snap the Jaguars’ 20-game losing streak.
“We are actually going to meet on, today, roster, whatever movements we have. But obviously, Matt’s earned the right to be the starting kicker right now,” Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer said on Monday.
Lambo ends his Jaguars career as the most accurate field-goal kicker in franchise history, making 91.6% of his field goals with the team (59-of-76). Lambo also made 90.1% of his extra point attempts with the team.
Lambo made 59 of his first 73 field goals with the Jaguars, including two game-winners: one against the Chargers in 2017 and one against the Denver Broncos in 2019. Lambo missed most of 2020 with a hip injury, however, limiting him to just five field goal attempts in four games.
Lambo struggled out of the gate in 2021, missing several kicks in the preseason and then starting 0-for-3 on field goals in the first three games of the season. In Lambo’s final game with the Jaguars, he also missed two extra-point attempts.
I like Josh
Lambo, I like his commitment to being a great player. He’s in a slump right now, but there’s also the
reality. The reality is you’ve got to put it through the uprights,” Meyer said following Week 4.
“We are all pulling for him—I can tell you
this, the whole team is pulling for him. He’s a great guy that works his you-know-what off.”
Lambo’s accuracy issues led to Wright being signed by the Jaguars prior to Week 4. Wright made three PATs in Week 4, but him and Lambo would compete over the next two weeks of practice to earn the right to be named the starting kicker for game days.
Wright won the competition both weeks. He struggled in Week 5, missing a 50+ yard field goal attempt and one PAT. But in Week 6, Wright was automatic, going 3-of-3 on field goals and making 54- and 53-yard field goals in the final four minutes of the game. Wright’s three field goals on Sunday were the first any Jaguars kicker has made this season.
Lambo appeared in 46 games during his five years with the Jaguars. During that time, Lambo was one of the league’s most accurate kickers, including leading the NFL in field goal % in 2019.