The Pittsburgh Steelers now have competition for punter Brad Wing as free agent punter Richie Leone has been signed to a reserve/futures contract..
Leone originally signed with the Baltimore Ravens as an undrafted rookie free agent out of Houston last May. During the 2014 preseason Leone punted just twice for a 41 yard average.
Leone finished his college career second on Houston’s all-time punting list with a 43.1 career average and helped lead the team to a No. 3 national ranking in net punting at 41.4 yards per punt. 34 of his 73 punts (46.6%) landed inside the 20-yard line, which ranked third in the NCAA.
The Roswell, Georgia native earned FWAA second-team All-American honors and second-team All-American Athletic Conference honors as a senior in 2013 after punting 73 times for 3,153 yards (43.2 avg.). Also in 2013 he was named a semifinalist for the Ray Guy Award, given to the nation’s best punter, for the third-consecutive season and was one of only two NCAA players to be named Ray Guy Award Player of the Week on two occasions.
Many thought that Leone might given Ravens veteran punter Sam Koch a run for his job last year but that didn’t happen.
Leone, who played quarterback in high school, also handled kickoffs, field goals and punts.