Free Agency Countdown: PK Matt Bryant re-signed

90714 ATLANTA: Falcons kicker Matt Bryant hits a field goal in overtime to beat the Saints 37-34 in their NFL football game on Sunday, Sept. 7, 2014, in Atlanta. CURTIS COMPTON / CCOMPTON@AJC.COM

90714 ATLANTA: Falcons kicker Matt Bryant hits a field goal in overtime to beat the Saints 37-34 in their NFL football game on Sunday, Sept. 7, 2014, in Atlanta. CURTIS COMPTON / CCOMPTON@AJC.COM

Editor’s note: Prior to the start of the new league year on March 10, AJC.Com is counting down the top unrestricted free agents the Atlanta Falcons will have to decide on this offseason. At the combine, general manager Thomas Dimitroff stated that team meet with agents who represent linebacker Sean Weatherspoon, special teamer Eric Weems and nose tackle Corey Peters.

FLOWERY BRANCH – For the Falcons, 40 is the new 30.

That’s the plan at least when it comes to kicker Matt Bryant, who signed a three-year contract extension with the team on Wednesday. The new deal will keep him from becoming an unrestricted free agent on March 10.

Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff the deal was close last Thursday at the scouting combine. The team is not overly concerned about Bryant’s age. He’s set to turn 40 in May.

“Matt has some age in his leg, but again, Matt is one of those guys who takes care of his body,” Dimitroff said. “He’s fine-tuned as far as his flexibility and his hydration, because that’s another part of it. I’m not concerned about it as far as what we are looking to do. I think he’s still got years left in him.”

The Falcons didn’t want Bryant to reach free agency.

“I think Matt is a heck of a football player and kicker,” Dimitroff said. “He’s done some really good things for us.”

Matt Bryant, 13-year kicker

The skinny: Re-signed with the Falcons

The snaps: He made 29 of 32 field goals last season and 40 of 40 extra points. He converted an NFL-best seven kicks from beyond 50 yards. His 90.6 field goal percentage in 2014 was tied for the fifth-best mark in the NFL and his 127 points ranked 12th.

The stats: Bryant has been with the Falcons since 2009. He’s made 148 of 167 field goals attempts (88.6 percent), including 18 of 24 from 50 yards are longer. He has become the second-leading scorer in franchise history, with 666 points. He’s 140 points shy of Morten Andersen’s club record of 806 points.

2014 salary: $2,750,000, plus a $562,500 pro-rated signing bonus. New terms, undisclosed.

FALCONS POTENTIAL UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS

DB Javier Arenas

LB Kroy Biermann

K Matt Bryant

G-T Gabe Carimi

S Charles Godfrey

G Mike Johnson

S Dwight Lowery

DE Cliff Matthews

CB Robert McClain

TE Bear Pascoe is not returning to the team.

DT Corey Peters

RB Jacquizz Rodgers

OT Jonathan Scott

RB Antone Smith

DE Osi Umenyiora

LB Sean Weatherspoon

WR Eric Weems

CB Josh Wilson

QB T.J. Yates

FALCONS STORIES

Falcons to focus on adding another cornerstone

Quinn-Dimitroff partnership off to a strong start

Q&A with Falcons head coach Dan Quinn at the combine

Falcons coach Dan Quinn fired up to watch pass-rushers

Q&A with Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff on moving forward

Falcons to keep character filter on draft picks

Falcons close to re-signing kicker Matt Bryant

Falcons LT Jake Matthews recovering from offseason surgery

Falcons plan to extend WR Julio Jones contract

Falcons could target Denver TE Julius Thomas in free agency

Falcons’ roster gutting could have big names (i.e. Steven Jackson)

Cutting the Falcons roster — Should they stay or should they go?

COMBINE STORIES

Todd Gurley speaks about autograph-signing caper

Bucs appear set to cast future with Jameis Winston

Todd Gurley intriguing prospect to NFL teams

Alabama stars Cooper, Collins headed for first round

Chris Conley puts on a dazzling show at the combine

Waller, Smelter out to prove NFL standing at the combine

VIDEO DEPARTMENT

Watch: D. Led — Falcons news at the combine

Watch: NFL Network’s Mike Mayock at the combine

Watch: Jameis Winston to throw at the combine

Watch: Todd Gurley has interviews set up with 24 NFL teams

Watch: Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff at the combine

Watch: Falcons coach Dan Quinn at the combine

Watch: Rams GM Les Snead on the pass-rush talent at the combine

FALCONS COMBINE MEETINGS

Oregon DE Arik Armstead talked scheme with the Falcons

Falcons met with Alabama quarterback Blake Sims

Falcons to meet with Florida DE Dante Fowler Jr.

Falcons met with Wake Forest CB Kevin Johnson

Falcons met with Alabama safety Landon Collins

PHOTO GALLERIES

Photographs from the 2015 NFL scouting combine

Photos of players with Georgia ties at the scouting combine

Photos of NFL pass rusher set to enter free agency

 


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