Posted Thu Sep 22nd by Monty
Broncos rookie cornerback Chris Harris was probably beating himself up for his unsportsmanlike conduct penalty that cost his team 45 yards of field position in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s game against the Cincinnati Bengals. Although head coach John Fox got the rookie’s back later in the week, questioning the call, Harris has to be relieved it didn’t cost the Broncos the game.
The penalty did have a steep cost to one of his teammates, though. Punter Britton Colquitt could have been in the NFL record books.
Or, more accurately, higher in the NFL record books.
Colquitt, who had a fantastic game, averaged 51 net yards and 55.8 gross yards punting for the day. According to DenverBroncos.com, those marks placed him fourth and tenth respectively in the NFL record books, minimum six punts.
But if Colquitt’s 82-yard punt in the fourth quarter hadn’t been called back by Harris’ penalty, Colquitt’s day would have been even more historic. The punter would have averaged 60.0 gross yards for the game, which would have broken the NFL record. His net average would have been 58.5 — second in league annals.
“It wasn’t only the six punts for a 55.8-yard average, with an amazing 51.0-yard net,” Sports Illustrated‘s Peter King wrote. “It was the fact that he had no bad punts. How many times has a punter punted six times in a game, with the worst one being a 49-yarder? His punts traveled 57, 58, 59, 49, 57 and 55 yards in a 24-22 Denver win.”
It’s a testament to both Colquitt’s skills, which are quickly becoming elite, and the Broncos special teams coverage that Colquitt’s Week Two finds itself listed among the best punting performances of all time. If only the refs hadn’t thrown the yellow flag, Colquitt’s game would have reigned above them all.
Sky’s the limit for Colquitt [DenverBroncos.com]