UPDATE: Jeff Schultz has now amended his original report, saying the Falcons will bring in punters for workouts but have not decided on Nizialek’s future.
That could mean that with a good week of practice and without a punter tryout that bowls them over, Nizialek will be back out there Sunday against the Giants. Stay tuned.
Deleting this screenshot Tweet and softening. The Falcons are planning to bring in punters on tryouts this week but have not made any decision on Cameron Nizialek. pic.twitter.com/IYDFsMvnn6— Jeff Schultz (@JeffSchultzATL) September 20, 2021
The Falcons had their punter battle upended by an injury to Sterling Hofrichter, but they wound up settling with Cameron Nizialek after the summer. His primary competition Dom Maggio was injured for part of that battle, but the former University of Georgia product also just seemed to earn the job by doing exactly what the team asked of him and booming a few punts in the preseason. After a mostly solid first game, there was no reason to think he’d be relinquishing that role.
Things happen quickly in the NFL, though, and when you’re a punter who can share some of the blame for a team going from a 3 point deficit to a massive one, things happen especially quickly. Jeff Schultz at The Athletic is now hearing Nizialek will be cut, with the team looking for a new punter heading into their Week 3 game against the Giants.
The Falcons are expected to waive former Georgia punter Cameron Nizialek this week and sign a replacement after Nizialek had two costly shanked punts in the game, a source told @TheAthletic— Jeff Schultz (@JeffSchultzATL) September 20, 2021
I said “unfortunately” about the obvious possibility that Nizialek would be cut during the game and I meant it, given how great it was to see someone who auditioned for the Falcons last year making the team in 2021 under a totally new regime. Nizialeak had his moments this summer and against the Eagles, but those shanked punts were costly, especially the one that set the Bucs up at their own 43 with Atlanta within three points. The Falcons will move on and sign another punting option, with Maggio potentially being an option if he’s healthy. It’s not the way anyone from Nizialeak or the Falcons wanted this to go, but it only takes a couple of miscues on special teams for teams to get itchy.
We’ll wish Nizialek well wherever he lands, and hope for the days of peak Matt Bosher again in Atlanta, where you didn’t really worry about who was punting because you were pretty confident things would go the way they were supposed to. Given this team’s margin of error over the first two games, that’s probably a must for the Falcons.