With Chris Kluwe struggling, Vikings bring in punter for workout
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The Minnesota Vikings appear to be sending a message to struggling punter Chris Kluwe.
The team tried out former San Diego State and Indianapolis Colts punter Brian Stahovich on Tuesday, according to Aaron Wilson of Fox Sports.
Stahovich, 22, punted at San Diego State from 2008 to 2011 and there was some thought he might be selected in the NFL draft last April. Stahovich was an All-Mountain West Conference selection who averaged 43.4 yards in 2011. More than a quarter of his punts were 50 yards or greater.
After not being selected, Stahovich was signed by the Colts on April 30 and cut by the team in late August.
Kluwe heard boos from the Metrodome crowd after shanking a 20-yard punt out of bounds in the Vikings' loss to Tampa Bay last Thursday. He ended up grossing 37.8 yards, netting 37.7 and averaging 4.25 seconds of hang time on six punts, with a long of 55 against the Buccaneers.
Kluwe is 26th in the NFL this season with a gross average of 43.8 yards per punt and 18th with a net average of 39.9 yards. The eight-year veteran has career averages of 44.3 gross yards per punt and 37.1 net yards.
This would not be the first time the Vikings have brought in a punter or punters for a tryout in an attempt to send Kluwe a message, if that indeed is the case.
In 2008 after the Saints' Reggie Bush returned two punts for touchdowns and nearly broke free for a third score, then-coach Brad Childress was so upset that Kluwe failed to punt two of the balls out of bounds that he brought in four free-agent punters to tryout. Kluwe, however, retained the job.
Kluwe's base salary for this season is $1.3 million under the terms of the seven-year, $8.735 million deal he signed in October 2007.
Tom Pelissero contributed