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 18   Todd Sauerbrun   P
  Height: 5-10   Weight: 215
  Year: 12   Yrs/Pat: 1
  Acquired: FA-06
  School: West Virginia
  Born: Jan 4, 1973    

Personal

Sauerbrun averaged 45.1 gross yards punting and kicked a 62-yard field goal as a senior at Ward Melville High School in East Setauket, N.Y. He also was regarded as one of the top prep lacrosse players in the state at Ward Melville, one of the East Coast’s top lacrosse programs. Sauerbrun majored in physical education at West Virginia. He is a racquetball enthusiast who competes in tournaments on the open level in Chicago in the offseason as well as several national tournaments. He plans to conduct kicking camps once his NFL career concludes. Todd Scott Sauerbrun was born Jan. 4, 1973, in Setauket, N.Y., and has a daughter, Brooke.

Overview

Sauerbrun, 33, is in his 12th NFL season and has punted for the Chicago Bears (1995-99), Kansas City Chiefs (2000), Carolina Panthers (2001-04) and Denver Broncos (2005). The 5-foot-10-inch, 215-pound punter has played in 162 career games and has averaged 44.0 yards per punt, totaling 36,600 yards on 832 kicks. He has placed 248 punts inside the 20-yard line and has recorded 201 career touchbacks. Over a six-year span from 2000-05, Sauerbrun ranked second in the NFL with a 45.1-yard gross punting average and led the league over that time with a 37.3-yard net punting average. He was selected to the NFC Pro Bowl squad for three straight seasons from 2001-03 and was named a first team Associated Press All-Pro on two occasions (2001, 2002) and earned second team honors once (2003). From 2001-03, while with the Carolina Panthers, Sauerbrun led the NFC in gross punting average each season, becoming the first player since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger to lead his conference in punting for three consecutive years. He was originally selected by the Chicago Bears in the second round (56th overall) of the 1995 NFL Draft. The former West Virginia University punter spent the first five seasons of his career with the Bears and spent one season with Kansas City before joining the Panthers as a free agent prior to the 2001 season. In his first season in Carolina, Sauerbrun set a career high with a 47.5-yard gross punting average, a figure that stands as the highest single-season average in the NFL since 1963, when Detroit’s Yale Lary averaged 48.9 yards per punt. Over four seasons with the Panthers, Sauerbrun became Carolina’s franchise record holder in every major punting category. He was traded to Denver prior to the 2005 season and in his only campaign with the Broncos averaged 43.8 yards on his 72 punts.

2006 Season

2006 (2/0/0/0): Signed as a free agent on Dec. 22, 2006.

at Jacksonville (12/24): Punted five times for 175 yards (35.0 avg.) in the Patriots' 24-21 division-clinching win over the Jaguars ... Booted a 35-yard punt that Alvin Pearman muffed at the Jaguars' 10-yard line in the fourth quarter ... Nailed a critical 42-yard punt from deep in Patriots' territory late in the fourth quarter. at Tennessee (12/31): Registered five punts for 233 yards (46.6 avg.) in the Patriots' 40-23 victory over the Titans ... Boomed a 52-yard punt early in the first quarter ... Nailed a 58-yard punt that was downed at the Titans' 24-yard line early in the fourth quarter.

2006 Postseason (3/0/0/0): vs. N.Y. Jets (1/7): Punted twice for 74 yards (37.0 avg.) in the Patriots' 37-16 AFC Wild Card victory over the N.Y. Jets. San Diego (1/14): Punted seven times for 309 yards (44.1 avg.) in the Patriots' 24-21 AFC Divisional playoff victory over the Chargers ... Dropped one punt inside the 20-yard line ... Boomed a 56-yard punt from deep in Patriots' territory in the first quarter ... Nailed a 52-yard punt in the second quarter ... Booted a 51 yard punt that was muffed by Eric Parker and recovered by David Thomas at the San Diego 31-yard line in the third quarter. at Indianapolis (1/21): Punted five times for 257 yards (51.4 avg.) with one kick inside the 20-yard line ... Registered three punts of 50 yards or more ... Lofted a 37-yard punt that was fair caught at the Colts 12-yard line in the second quarter ... Boomed a 58-yard punt in the third quarter ... Nailed a 59-yard punt to the Indianapolis 6-yard line in the fourth quarter ... Launched a 54-yard punt that just rolled into the end zone late in the fourth quarter.

2005 Season

2005 Season (Denver Broncos - 16/0):

2004 Season

2004 Season (Carolina Panthers -16/0): Sauerbrun played all 16 games in his final year with Carolina, punting 76 times for 3,351 yards while placing 25 punts inside the 20-yard line. Sauerbrun, who became Carolina’s all-time leader in punts with 350, ranked second in the NFC (4th in NFL) with a 44.1-yard gross punting average and boasted a 37.5 net punting average for the third-highest mark in the NFC (5th in NFL). His franchise-best career punt total accompanies his Panthers career records in gross punting average (45.5 yds.) and punts inside the 20 (113). He also attempted a field goal in 2004 for the first time since his collegiate career, connecting on his lone try (34 yds.) at S.F. (11/14) for the go-ahead score with less than five minutes to play while converting all four extra-point tries. He took on kicking duties in the second half against the 49ers after John Kasay was injured in the contest.

2003 Season

2003 Season (Carolina Panthers - 16/0): Sauerbrun played all 16 regular-season games for Carolina and punted 77 times for a gross average of 44.6 yards, leading the NFC (T-2nd in NFL) in that category for the third consecutive year. He became the only punter since the NFL merger in 1970 to lead either the AFC or NFC in gross punting average in three consecutive seasons and earned his third consecutive Pro Bowl selection. His season totals were part of a 45.9-yard gross average from 2001-03, marking the highest three-year mark in NFL history (min. 200 punts). Sauerbrun became the first punter to make three consecutive appearances in the Pro Bowl since Matt Turk of Washington (1997-99) as well as the third player in Panthers history to be named to three consecutive Pro Bowls (KR Michael Bates, TE Wesley Walls). Additionally, he was named All-Pro by Football Digest and The Sporting News, second-team All-Pro by the Associated Press and All-NFC by Pro Football Weekly. Sauerbrun, who totaled a 35.6-yard net average as well as a long punt of 64 yards and 22 punts inside the 20-yard line, had three of his attempts blocked (2 at the N.Y. Giants 11/28). Critical to Carolina advancing to the Super Bowl, Sauerbrun played all four playoff games in the first postseason action of his career. In Super Bowl XXXVIII vs. N.E. (2/1), he had a strong showing with a 44.3-yard gross average (38.3 net) on seven punts with one inside the 20 and contributed a special-teams tackle.

2002 Season

2002 Season (Carolina Panthers - 16/0): Sauerbrun played all 16 games for Carolina and led the NFL with a gross punting average of 45.5 yards as well as a career-high and franchise-record 104 punts, becoming the first punter in NFL history to lead the league in both categories in the same season since Ralf Mojsiejenko of San Diego in 1987. He was selected to his second consecutive Pro Bowl and was the first punter to earn consecutive Pro Bowl selections since Matt Turk of Washington (1997-99). Sauerbrun was named first-team All-Pro by the Associated Press, Sports Illustrated, The Sporting News and Football Digest as well as All-NFL and All-NFC by Pro Football Weekly. Sauerbrun became the sixth punter since the NFL merger in 1970 to lead the league in gross punting average in consecutive seasons and the first to do so since Greg Montgomery of the Houston Oilers (1992-93). Combining his numbers from 2001, Sauerbrun had the third and fourth best consecutive-year totals in punting yards (9,154) and gross average (46.5) in NFL history. He boasted a net average of 37.5 yards for the fourth best mark in the NFL and led the NFC (T-2nd in NFL) with 31 punts inside the 20-yard line.

2001 Season

2001 Season (Carolina Panthers - 16/0): Sauerbrun enjoyed arguably the finest season of his NFL career, playing all 16 games in his first year with Carolina and recording the highest gross punting average (47.5) in the NFL since 1963 (Yale Lary, Det. - 48.9 yds.). He was elected to his first Pro Bowl as the first Carolina punter to achieve that distinction and received several other honors, including: The Golden Toe Award (Pro Football Weekly / Pro Football Writer’s Association); First-team All-Pro (Associated Press, Sports Illustrated, Pro Football Weekly, College and Pro Football Newsweekly and The Sporting News; and All-NFC (Football News). The NFL’s leader in net (38.9 yds. - a career high) and gross punting average, Sauerbrun ranked second in the league with 35 punts inside the 20-yard line for the third highest single-season total in NFL history since the league began tracking the statistic in 1976. He recorded a long punt of 73 yards that was the fifth-longest punt in the NFL on the year while drilling 43 punts longer than 50 yards, 18 longer than 60 yards and five that were at least 70 yards. He finished the year recording a 60+ yard punt in nine consecutive games and made three special-teams tackles on the season.

2000 Season

2000 Season (Kansas City - 16/0): In his only season with Kansas City after signing with the club as an unrestricted free agent April 3, Sauerbrun played all 16 games for the Chiefs and punted 82 times for 3,656 yards with a 44.6-yard gross average (35.8 net). He also drilled 28 punts inside the 20-yard line and had a long punt of 68 yards while tying for fourth in the NFL with 28 punts of more than 50 yards. Sauerbrun proved to be an asset in all areas of special teams, tying a career high with nine special-teams tackles to mark the most ever for a Chiefs punter or kicker since the club began tracking that statistic in 1982.

1999 Season

1999 Season (Chicago Bears - 16/0): Sauerbrun, fully recovered from a left knee injury that ended his 1998 campaign in September of that year, appeared in all 16 games with Chicago and wrapped up his time with the Bears second in team annals with a 42.2-yard career gross average. For the season, he punted 85 times for 3,478 yards for a 40.9-yard gross average (35.4 net) and placed 20 punts inside the 20-yard line while recording a long punt of 65 and one special-teams tackle.

1998 Season

1998 Season (Chicago Bears - 3/0): Sauerbrun played three games with Chicago before sustaining a season-ending left knee injury that forced him to go on injured reserve Sept. 23. Before the injury, he was off to an outstanding start and led the NFC (2nd in NFL) in both gross (49.4) and net (42.1) punting averages. Sauerbrun finished the year punting 15 times with six attempts landing inside the 20-yard line. He suffered an injury to his left knee (ACL and MLL) on a roughing-the-punter call in the fourth quarter at T.B. (9/20). He underwent successful knee surgery Oct. 2.

1997 Season

1997 Season (Chicago Bears - 16/0): Sauerbrun appeared in all 16 games for Chicago, punting 95 times with a 42.7-yard gross punting average (32.8 net) along with 26 punts inside the 20-yard line for the third-highest single-season total in franchise history. He also ranked seventh on the Bears with a personal-best nine special-teams stops and had two rushes for eight yards.

1996 Season

1996 Season (Chicago Bears - 16/0): Sauerbrun played all 16 games for Chicago and was a second-team All-NFC choice by United Press International after ranking third in the NFC with a 44.8-yard gross average (34.9 net) on 78 punts, including 15 inside the 20-yard line and a then career-long 72-yarder. His 44.8-yard gross average represented the second-highest single-season mark in Bears history. He excelled on kickoffs, registering nine touchbacks on 57 kicks. Sauerbrun also was 2-of-2 on pass attempts, totaling 63 yards to gain first downs on a pair of fake punts. Additionally, he rushed once for three yards, securing a first down out of a punt formation.

1995 Season

1995 Season (Chicago Bears - 15/0): Selected by Chicago in the second round (56th overall) of the 1995 NFL Draft, Sauerbrun played 15 games as a rookie and averaged 37.8 gross yards (31.1 net) on 55 punts. He also placed 16 punts inside the 20-yard line and recorded a long punt of 61 yards while making three special-teams tackles. He handled the team’s kickoff duties, drilling six of his 64 kicks for touchbacks.

College

With 167 punts for 7,733 yards, Todd ended his four-year career at West Virginia University as the NCAA's all-time leader with a 46.3 yard gross average accumulated from 1991-94, surpassing the previous mark of 45.6 set by Reggie Roby at the University of Iowa from 1979-82. A three-time All-Big East first-team pick and an honorable mention All-America choice as a sophomore and junior, he also handled the kickoff duties and only 104 of his career 221 kickoffs were returned. A unanimous All-America and All-Big East first team choice as a senior in 1994, Todd led the nation with a 48.4 yard average on 72 punts for 3,486 yards, setting an NCAA record for the highest single-season average for a punter with more than 50 attempts and another mark with 32 punts of at least 50 yards. He averaged 60.1 yards on nine punts, including a 90-yarder versus Nebraska to eclipse the previous NCAA single-game record of a 57-yard average set by the University of Virginia's Ralph Anastasio in 1957. Todd led the conference with a 45.1 gross average on 47 punts for 2,097 yards as a junior in 1993. In his only season as the team's place kicker, he was successful on eight of 17 field goals and 30 of 32 extra points while 54 of his 75 kickoffs resulted in touchbacks. Todd kicked a game-winning 36-yarder against Louisville. As a sophomore in 1992, Todd's 44.3 yard average on 53 punts for 2,348 yards led the Big East and ranked seventh in the nation. He also set a personal-best with 19 punts inside the 20. One of only two true freshman to earn a letter in 1991, Todd was responsible for kickoffs and punted just three times for 142 yards with a 47.3 yard average.