Someone new will take over the Arizona Cardinals punting duties in 2023

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Veteran Arizona Cardinals punter Andy Lee will be replaced by either Matt Haack or Nolan Cooney when the 2023 campaign gets underway.

Throughout the current offseason, the fate of Arizona Cardinals punter Andy Lee remained up in the air. On Monday, it became clear that the organization would now be moving on from the 40-year-old veteran.

The signing of Matt Haack more than likely spells the end of the Lee era in the desert. For the past six seasons, the 6 foot 1,185 pound Lee did a magnificent job doing the punting for the Cardinals. Apparently, the new regime felt the need to cut ties with the three-time Pro Bowler and roll with someone younger.

Monday's acquisition of Haack would seem to indicate that the free-agent addition will have the inside track on Arizona's punting gig. After all, the 28-year-old has performed that duty fairly well in stints with the Miami Dolphins, Buffalo Bills and Indianapolis Colts. There's another candidate for the Cards job, however, who'll be breathing down Haack's neck at this summer's training camp.

Nolan Cooney, a 26-year-old who's been bouncing around the league since 2021, could conceivably give Haack a run for his money. The Rhode Island native has had two stints with Arizona, basically waiting for an opportunity to replace the aging Lee. Based on his backstory alone, there should be plenty of people rooting for Cooney to emerge victorious over Haack in what could be an incredibly heated competition.

A training camp competition will determine who will be the punter for the Arizona Cardinals in 2023

During his junior year in high school, Cooney was diagnosed with testicular cancer. While undergoing chemotherapy, the youngster learned to punt by watching Youtube videos, and went on to make the Syracuse University football squad as a walk-on. In 2020, Cooney led the FBS with a 44.8 yard punting average, and was given the "Brian Piccolo" award for overcoming his battle with the deadly disease back in high school.

Haack turned professional back in 2017, signing as an undrafted free agent with the Dolphins following a collegiate career at Arizona State University. After four campaigns with Miami, the Iowa native inked a deal with the Bills in March of 2021. Haack spent a single season in Buffalo, and then agreed to a one-year contract with the Colts in August of 2022.

During his six-year pro career, Haack has averaged 44.5 yards per punt, 160 of which landed inside the opponents' 20-yard line. Cooney, on the other hand, has yet to appear in an NFL regular-season matchup. The 6 foot 3, 202 pound Cooney's only professional experience has come as a practice-squad member of the New Orleans Saints, Cardinals and Colts.

We here at wish the classy and talented Lee nothing but the best. For the first time since 2016, Arizona will have someone else doing the punting. Cards fans can only hope that either Haack or Cooney can live up to the impressive standards that Lee has set.

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(Information provided by Wikipedia; Statistics provided Pro Football Reference)