- Kevin Seifert, NFL Nation
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So, Kickalicious made a 58-yard field goal Monday at the Detroit Lions' training camp. Veteran David Akers' longest conversion came from 40 yards, according to local reports. So is there anything to get excited about yet?
I don't think so. At least not yet.
As much fun as the Havard Rugland's viral YouTube video has brought us, the fact is we already knew he had a strong leg. Drilling a 58-yard kick is impressive, but it's not nearly as relevant as consistently making kicks between 20 and 45 yards -- the most important job of any NFL place-kicker.
It's hard to imagine Rugland proving better at that this summer than Akers, a six-time Pro Bowler. A 58-yarder will further extend the legend, but make sure you read what Lions coach Jim Schwartz told reporters Monday and take it to heart:
"That's going to be the thing with Rugland," Schwartz said, via Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press. "Not just hitting one 58-yarder. It's being consistent over the course of time. Those are things you look for in a placekicker. He certainly has the talent to do it. He's getting better every day, and I said before, he's like some of those baseball players or golfers that don't swing real hard, but the ball jumps off their bat. That's sort of the leg he has, he sort of takes a nice easy swing, and he's got plenty of leg to hit anything on the field."
To me, the only thing that will keep Akers from being the Lions' place-kicker this season is his physical condition. As long as he is healthy at the end of the preseason, you would think he will win the job. But it'll be fun to see if Rugland at least makes it interesting.