NEW YORK (April 28, 2005) -- It didn't take long for the New York Jets to get rid of Doug Brien.
The Jets released the veteran kicker April 28, five days after they picked Ohio State All-American Mike Nugent in the second round of the NFL draft. Brien missed field goals from 47 and 43 yards in the final 2 minutes of regulation of a 20-17 overtime loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers in the playoffs, sealing his fate with the team.
By releasing Brien now, the Jets take hit of about $400,000 on this year's salary cap. The spotlight now turns on Nugent, set to make his debut when minicamp opens April 29.
"Doug Brien did a great job for us in the two years that he was here and wore our uniform," coach Herman Edwards said. "At this point in time, we feel that making this move gives Doug some freedom in his options in terms of continuing on in his career."
Minnesota coach Mike Tice, who earlier indicated the Vikings might be interesting in bringing Brien back, said the team had no immediate plans to sign him or anyone else. He said the Vikings would continue to monitor the situation this summer.
"We've already got three kickers on our roster," Tice said, referring to Aaron Elling, Jose Cortez and undrafted rookie Jonathan Nichols.
Brien, entering his 12th season in the league, lost his job with Minnesota after he missed two extra points and a field goal in an overtime loss in the second game of the 2002 season.
The Jets clearly couldn't erase their memories of falling short of the AFC championship game. Though Brien said two days after the loss, "I got the impression that they want me back," that wasn't in the Jets' plans.
Instead, they used their first pick of the draft, No. 47 overall, on Nugent, becoming the third-highest kicker to be selected since 1982. Nugent converted 87.8 percent (65 of 74) of his field goal attempts with the Buckeyes, and has a much more powerful leg than Brien.
Brien, a veteran of 152 games, served as the Jets' kicker the past two seasons, converting 83.6 percent of his field goal attempts (51-of-61) and 57-of-58 extra points. He also has played for San Francisco, New Orleans, Indianapolis and Tampa Bay.