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Chiefs Long Snapper a Pro-Bowler


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Chiefs special teams KICK ASS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

So all you people out there who are proud of their playoff teams, let it be know that WE, THE PEOPLE OF KANSAS CITY, can watch one of the best long snappers in the league week after week. You people check your jealousy at the door.

 

:D:DB)

 

Actually, Kendall Gammon graduated from the same college as I, Pittsburg State University.

 

 

Long snappers finally land at Pro Bowl

 

Greg Beacham / Associated Press

Posted: 3 hours ago

 

 

 

KAPOLEI, Hawaii (AP) - When you're a long snapper, anonymity is a good thing - until the Pro Bowl ballots are printed. That's why Brian Jennings believes the best performers in their unique profession deserve more attention.

 

"We've just got to figure out how to get us on the ballot," said Jennings, the San Francisco 49ers' near-flawless snapper for punts and kicks. "We deserve it. We're the 'need' players on the roster this year, but you would think you would need us every year. I think it's only right that there's a long snapper voted to the Pro Bowl."

Jennings and Kansas City's Kendall Gammon are standouts in a job where nobody wants to stand out, but thanks to coaches Bill Cowher and Jim Mora, they're making their first trips to Hawaii this week. Gammon and Jennings received special Pro Bowl invitations from the coaches, who are allowed to choose one "need" player for any spot on the roster.

 

Usually, a regular center or a tight end handles the long snaps for the Pro Bowl teams. Jennings and Gammon are the least famous players at the Pro Bowl - and that's just fine with them.

 

"You can't be a deep snapper and have an ego," Gammon said. "The only way you get your name in the paper is if you mess up."

 

But almost nobody can remember the last time either of these two veterans made a snap that was anything less than perfect. Gammon has turned long snapping into an art form, even producing an instructional video on the subject, while Jennings is among the best of the next generation - but because their position isn't on the all-star ballot, they can't be elected to the Pro Bowl.

 

Gammon played 13 seasons before getting his first trip to the all-star game - the second-longest wait in NFL history.

 

"It's been really nice to see the reaction we've got from other players," Gammon said. "A couple of guys have said to me, 'It's about time you got over here.' It's great to know guys appreciate what you do. If you ask any player, they'll tell you how important a deep snapper can be to a team."

 

For the past two years, Jennings has campaigned for greater recognition. San Francisco's easygoing locker-room favorite has preached his message with fervor, arguing that the best long snappers should be treated the same way as star running backs and safeties.

 

"(Gammon) has been doing it a lot longer than me, and he's always been one of the best ones out there," said Jennings, a five-year veteran. "Every team needs somebody to do what we do, so why wouldn't the best ones go to the Pro Bowl?"

 

When the Steelers chose Gammon in the 11th round of the 1992 draft, there were only a handful of specialized long snappers, and mistakes were much more common.

 

These days, nearly every team fills one roster spot with a player whose only assignment is to deliver perfect snaps to punters and kick-holders - and their value has escalated along with their salaries. Detroit attempted to sign Jennings away from San Francisco two years ago, but the 49ers matched the Lions' offer sheet.

 

Gammon and Jennings also have played tight end on occasion during their careers, but they're focused on delivering spirals at the right height and pace - even with the laces in exactly the right place. The Chiefs now rely on his perfection: Kicker Morten Andersen hesitated to re-sign with Kansas City two years ago until he was certain Gammon would remain.

 

Gammon has more years of NFL experience than any player on either roster, and only San Francisco offensive lineman Ray Brown - a 16-year veteran when he earned a trip to Hawaii in 2002 - has ever waited longer for his first Pro Bowl berth.

 

"He's one of the best there's ever been," said Cowher, who drafted Gammon and coached him in Pittsburgh for his first four NFL seasons. "This league has got into such specialization that it's important to have a long snapper here, just to recognize the work they do, and when I looked at the list of guys out here, Kendall obviously stood out."

 

Cowher also believes long snappers should be added to the Pro Bowl ballot - but just in case the NFL doesn't put the position to a vote any time soon, Gammon is making the most of this trip.

 

He and his wife, Leslie, took pictures of their two sons, Blaise and Drake, with every available all-star after practice Thursday. Peyton Manning, Jerome Bettis, Hines Ward and Will Shields all put their arms around the boys.

 

"This is just such an honor," Gammon said. "My family will remember it forever."

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