Matt Araiza gets a second chance, after sex scandals, as the Chiefs’ punter

Matt Araiza gets a second chance, after sex scandals, as the Chiefs’ punter

Matt Araiza, the talented punter whose career was disrupted by a sexual assault accusation, is now poised to become the Kansas City Chiefs‘ punter for the 2024 season.

The Chiefs recently released punter Ryan Rehkow, leaving Araiza as the sole punter on their roster. Although there’s a chance the Chiefs could bring in another punter to compete with Araiza, it looks like he will secure the starting position when the regular season begins.

Araiza originally won the Buffalo Bills‘ punting job as a rookie in 2022. However, he was cut when news surfaced of a lawsuit accusing him of gang rape during his college years. Despite never being criminally charged and the accuser later dropping the lawsuit, Araiza spent over a year out of the NFL.

At San Diego State, Araiza was highly regarded as the best punter in college football, winning the Ray Guy Award and setting an NCAA record with a 51.2 yards per punt average. He also handled kickoffs and field goals in college, showcasing his versatility.

Araiza’s redemption: Chiefs’ only punter heading into 2024

With the off-field issues that ended his stint in Buffalo behind him, Araiza now has a chance to demonstrate his abilities in the NFL. If he performs as well as he did in college, he could become one of the top punters in the league this season.

The Chiefs, fresh off their second consecutive Super Bowl victory after defeating the San Francisco 49ers in overtime of Super Bowl LVIII, appear confident in Araiza’s potential. His impressive college stats include averaging 51.2 yards per punt on 79 punts and making 50 out of 68 field goals. His versatility could also be beneficial if their current kicker, Harrison Butker, ever faces injuries.

Araiza’s path to redemption and success in the NFL seems clearer now. The Chiefs are aiming for a three-peat when they kick off the season on September 5 against the Baltimore Ravens, and Araiza’s powerful leg could be a significant asset in their campaign.

With Araiza in their ranks, the Chiefs are hopeful he will replicate his college success and contribute to another championship run. The punter’s redemption story is set to unfold, and fans will be watching to see if he lives up to his college reputation.e

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