May 10, 2016

Highlighted Year: Martin Gramatica, 1999

Placekicker, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Age: 24 (Nov. 27)
1st season in pro football
College: Kansas State
Height: 5’9”   Weight: 170

The Argentina-born Gramatica started out playing soccer and had just one year of high school football prior to college, but proved to have a strong and accurate leg. While he missed a season due to injury, he was an AP first-team All-American in 1997, when he kicked a 65-yard field goal, the longest in NCAA history without use of a tee. Overall, he booted 54 field goals in 70 attempts (77.1 %), 187 of 192 tried for extra points, for a total of 349 points. Gramatica was chosen by the Buccaneers in the third round of the 1999 NFL draft and made an immediate impression as a rookie with his reliable field goal kicking, followed by enthusiastic celebrations, although there were concerns about the length of his kickoffs.

1999 Season Summary
Appeared in all 16 games
[Bracketed numbers indicate league rank in Top 20]

Field goals – 27 [8, tied with John Hall, 1st in NFC]
Most field goals, game – 4 vs. Atlanta 11/21
Field goal attempts – 32 [11, tied with Jason Hanson & Brett Conway]
Most field goal attempts, game – 4 vs. Chicago 10/24, vs. Atlanta 11/21
Field goal percentage – 84.4 [10]
PATs – 25
PAT attempts – 25
Longest field goal – 53 yards vs. Atlanta 11/21

Field Goals – 27
PATs – 25
Points – 106 [15, tied with Al Del Greco & Jason Hanson]

Postseason: 2 G
Field goals – 2
Most field goals, game – 2 at St. Louis, NFC Championship
Field goal attempts – 2
Most field goal attempts, game – 2 at St. Louis, NFC Championship
PATs – 2
Most PATs, game – 2 vs. Washington, NFC Divisional playoff
PAT attempts – 2
Longest field goal – 25 yards at St. Louis, NFC Championship

Buccaneers went 11-5 to finish first in the NFC Central. Won NFC Divisional playoff over Washington Redskins (14-13). Lost NFC Championship to St. Louis Rams (11-6).  

Gramatica followed up in 2000 by making good on 28 of 34 field goal attempts (82.4 %), five of seven coming from 50 yards or more, and all 42 of his PAT attempts for a total of 126 points. He received first-team All-NFC honors from Pro Football Weekly in addition to being an AP second-team All-NFL selection and was named to the Pro Bowl. While hampered by leg injuries over the next two seasons, he continued to be reliable on field goals inside of 50 yards and led the NFL with a team-record 32 in 2002 while not missing any extra points for the fourth consecutive year. However, his performance dropped off significantly in 2003 and he was let go during the ’04 season, finishing up as a kickoff specialist for the Colts. Injuries that required surgery cost him the entire 2005 season. Signed by the Patriots in ’06, he lost out to Stephen Gostkowski in the preseason and was waived, briefly rejoining Indianapolis and then replacing Mike Vanderjagt in Dallas. He hit on 6 of 8 field goal tries and all 14 PAT attempts but injuries caused the Cowboys to let him go and he spent parts of the 2007 and ‘08 seasons, his last, with the New Orleans Saints. Overall, he was successful on 155 of 203 field goals (76.4 %), with a team-record 137 on 179 attempts coming with the Bucs, and he made good on 228 of 230 PATs for a total of 693 points.  592 of those points were compiled with Tampa Bay, another franchise high. Gramatica was chosen to one Pro Bowl. His younger brother Bill also kicked in the NFL, with the Cardinals and Dolphins.


Highlighted Years features players who were consensus 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