BattleHawks punter Marquette King was recently asked on Twitter whether he was going to be punting in the XFL next season:
It didn’t take long for King to respond:
He’s not wrong. King played the majority of his 7-year career for the Raiders, where he led the league in punting yards in 2014, and was named 2nd-team All-Pro in 2016.
King was placed on IR his rookie year, after impressing the Raiders coaches enough during the preseason while incumbent Shane Lechler was rehabbing his injury. The next year, Lechler signed with the Texans, and King became the punter in Oakland.
Between 2013 and 2017 King would average 46.8 yards per punt, with longs of 70, and 72. To put that in perspective, we checked a few of the greatest punters from the NFL. His predecessor, Lechler, had a career average of 47.6, Jeff Feagles averaged 41.6, and Reggie Roby averaged 43.3.
Right after the 2017 season, the Raiders released him. He wouldn’t stay unemployed long, as Denver signed him less than a week later. Four games into the 2018 season, King suffered a leg injury, and was released with an injury settlement.
Selected by the XFL’s St. Louis BattleHawks in the 2020 supplemental draft, King went on to lead the league in punting, averaging 47.7 yards per punt. Known for his dances and celebrations after great kicks, Marquette fit right in with the XFL culture.
No doubt a top talent at the position, the kicking game in professional football can be a finicky business. There are many guys with the skill to punt and kick that are not on NFL rosters right now, and in Week 1, we saw a lot of missed kicks, and subpar punting.
It’s good that King is still trying to get back into the NFL. He has proven he can still punt the ball well, and has continued to work on his craft. If he doesn’t get signed to a roster before the next XFL season, we hope to see him back in BattleHawk blue, showing the NFL what they missed out on.
For the Love of Football.
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