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Bills end kicker competition by cutting incumbent Rian Lindell

By Tim Graham

PITTSFORD -- The Buffalo Bills have released the player who had been with them longer than anyone else.

The Bills this morning announced they've cut kicker Rian Lindell. The move ends one of the summer's biggest competitions. The Bills drafted kicker Dustin Hopkins in the sixth round, and the rookie's livelier leg was evident in practice.

Lindell was entering his 14th NFL season and 11th with the Bills. He holds franchise records with an 83.3 career field-goal percentage, a 92.0 field-goal percentage in 2006, 18 consecutive successful field goals in 2007 and 225 consecutive extra points.

He ranks second all-time in Bills scoring with 980 points, 31 points behind Steve Christie.

Lindell made 21 of his 24 attempts last season, but his longest attempt was only 50 yards. He tried from that distance twice, making one. Bills coach Chan Gailey was criticized for not trusting him to kick long field goals, but Lindell's leg had lost some power.

The Bills appear to have cemented their kicking specialists. They cut punter Brian Stahovich last week, awarding that job to Shawn Powell.

With Lindell gone, the oldest player on the Bills' roster is linebacker Bryan Scott, who's entering his 11th NFL season.


Dustin Hopkins | Rian Lindell | Shawn Powell
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About Press Coverage

Tim Graham

Tim Graham

Tim Graham returned to The Buffalo News in 2011 after covering the NFL for three years at ESPN and for one year at the Palm Beach Post. Before that, the Cleveland native spent seven seasons on the Buffalo Sabres beat for The News and was president of the Boxing Writers Association of America.

@ByTimGraham |

Mark Gaughan

Mark Gaughan

Buffalo native Mark Gaughan started working at The News in 1980 and has been covering the Bills exclusively since 1992. He is a former president of the Pro Football Writers of America, and he is a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame selection committee.

@gggaughan |

Jay Skurski

Jay Skurski

Jay Skurski joined The News in January 2009. The Lewiston native attended St. Francis High School before graduating from the University of South Florida. He writes a weekly Fantasy column in addition to his beat writing duties.

@JaySkurski |