Saints kicker Wil Lutz says he won’t play in 2021 after post-surgery setback

·1 min read

This is really tough. New Orleans Saints kicker Wil Lutz announced Tuesday that he suffered a setback during rehab from preseason core muscle surgery that will require him to shut down for the 2021 season. The 2019 Pro Bowler injured a groin muscle last year and tried to work through it in training camp, but ultimately had to go under the knife. New Orleans designated him to return from injured reserve last week but now we know he won’t be kicking in 2021.

It’s a huge loss for the Saints, who relied on Lutz to kick several game-winning field goals in his career so far. He’s achieved an 86.6% success rate on field goals while connecting on 97.3% of his extra-point attempts, and he’s going to be very difficult to replace.

The good news is that rookie kicker Brian Johnson performed well in the rain against the Seattle Seahawks on Monday night, nailing two field goals from 21 and 33 yards as well as his lone point-after try. But that’s a far cry from the expectations Lutz has earned over time. We’ll see how Johnson performs as the season continues after he took over from a carousel of kickers including Brett Maher, Aldrick Rosas, and Cody Parkey.

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