February 4, 2016

Highlighted Year: Frank Garcia, 1983

Punter, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Age: 26
2nd season in pro football, 1st with Buccaneers
College: Arizona
Height: 6’0”   Weight: 205

A versatile player in high school who played quarterback and halfback as well as handling the placekicking and punting, Garcia performed well as a punter in college. He had difficulty catching on as a pro, however, failing to catch on with Atlanta in 1979, San Diego in ’80, and both Green Bay and Tampa Bay in 1981 before appearing in one game with Seattle after punter Jeff West was injured. He was let go by the Seahawks in ’82 and joined the Chicago Blitz of the USFL in the spring of 1983 but was cut once again after averaging 37.5 yards on 18 punts, with two touchbacks and eight inside the 20. Garcia got another shot with the Buccaneers and made the club.

1983 Season Summary
Appeared in all 16 games
[Bracketed numbers indicate league rank in Top 20]

Punts – 95 [1]
Most punts, game – 10 at Green Bay 10/2
Yards – 4008 [2]
Average – 42.2 [6, 1st in NFC]
Best average, game – 48.4 (on 8 punts) at Minnesota 11/6
Punts blocked – 1 [3, tied with ten others]
Longest punt – 64 yards

Awards & Honors:
2nd team All-NFC: UPI

Buccaneers went 2-14 to finish fifth in the NFC Central while generating the fewest total yards (4477) in the NFL.

Garcia spent another four seasons with the Buccaneers and remained steady, if not outstanding. Typically, his net average ranked lower than his gross average. He was let go after a 1987 season in which his average dipped to a low of 38.9 yards with a poor net average of 28.3. Overall, he averaged 41.1 yards on 379 punts with Tampa Bay.


Highlighted Years features players who were first-team All-League* selections or league* or conference** leaders in the following statistical categories:

Rushing: Yards, TDs (min. 10)
Passing: Yards, Completion Pct., Yards per Attempt, TDs, Rating
Receiving: Catches, Yards, TDs (min. 10)
Scoring: TDs, Points, Field Goals (min. 5)
All-Purpose: Total Yards
Defense: Interceptions, Sacks
Kickoff Returns: Average
Punt Returns: Average
Punting: Average

*Leagues include NFL (1920 to date), AFL (1926), AFL (1936-37), AAFC (1946-49), AFL (1960-69), WFL (1974-75), USFL (1983-85)

**NFC/AFC since 1970