The New England Patriots spent a fourth-round pick in the 2023 NFL Draft on Maryland kicker Chad Ryland, which drew criticism at the time for the simple fact that a team with so many weaknesses at key positions probably shouldn't be using a fourth-rounder on a position such as kicker.
Ryland hasn't done anything to make that selection look like a good one, either. Of the 36 NFL kickers who have attempted at least one field goal this season, Ryland ranks 34th in field goal percentage (66.7) by converting just 12 of his 18 attempts.
His six missed field goals are tied for the most in the league. One of those misses came at the end of Sunday's Week 12 game against the New York Giants when Ryland's 35-yard field goal attempt sailed wide left, resulting in a 10-7 loss for the Patriots at MetLife Stadium.
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The Patriots brought in several special teams player for workouts Tuesday, including four kickers, per KPRC 2 Houston's Aaron Wilson.
The Patriots could have just kept Nick Folk, the veteran kicker who made around 90 percent of his field goal attempts for New England from the middle of the 2019 season through the end of 2022. But they let Folk go in free agency over the offseason. He signed with the Tennessee Titans, and he has made 22 of 23 field goals this season.
Ryland could still turn things around, but it's hard to be optimistic.