Veteran teammates Lee, Dawson together again in Arizona
TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — Andy Lee and Phil Dawson are together again, a little older and very pleased to be on the same team at this point in their long careers.
The Cardinals signed Lee to a two-year contract. In addition to punting, he’ll be the holder for Dawson, just as he was for two years in San Francisco.
The 42-year-old Dawson joked about teaming up with the 35-year-old Lee.
“I think Sunset Acres should sponsor the special teams unit,” he said after the team’s practice Monday.
Both players, though, say their skills have not diminished.
“I feel like I’m still the same,” Lee said. “I feel like I can do everything I’ve always done.”
Lee is entering his 14th NFL season. He played 11 with San Francisco, one with Cleveland and one with Carolina before being released by the Panthers on Saturday.
He only played half a season in Carolina due to a hamstring injury, but averaged 49.1 yards per punt.
Lee was an All-Pro in 2007, 2011 and 2012 and made the Pro Bowl in 2007, 2009 and 2011. He has a career average of 46.3 yards per punt and a 39.5 net average. Of his 1,407 punts, 343 landed inside the 20-yard line.
“I think everybody knows what kind of punter Andy is,” Dawson said. “Obviously I’m all for it, not only because I played with him but I have a lot of respect for what he’s done for a long time in this league. And I think he can be an asset to our punt team and our special teams unit overall.”
Arizona coach Bruce Arians had been dissatisfied with punting candidates Wile and Richie Leone in the preseason.
Dawson helped guide Lee to Arizona.
“I’ve reached out to Phil a little bit here and there,” Lee said. “He reached out to me yesterday. It’s good to be back here with him and it’s good to get to work with him again.”
Lee said there are about seven players on the Arizona roster that are former teammates, plus he was a college teammate of Larry Fitzgerald at Pittsburgh. Both were drafted in 2004.
NOTES: The Cardinals placed rookie running back/kick returner T.J. Logan on injured reserve with the option of bringing him back. He could be reinstated to play by Week 8. ... Arizona elected captains Dawson, Carson Palmer, Fitzgerald, Patrick Peterson and Frostee Rucker.
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