METAIRIE, La. -- New Orleans Saints special teams coordinator Greg McMahon spoke for the first time about kicker Garrett Hartley's release when coordinators were made available to the media on Friday. Naturally McMahon, who has been with Hartley since he first arrived in 2008, said it was a difficult move.
"Hey, I love Garrett Hartley. And as we talk around here, we'll walk together forever," McMahon's aid of a popular phrase the Saints have used to describe members of the Super Bowl championship team an organization. "And that doesn't just come and go. He's a good man, he's a great man and a heck of a football player."
McMahon, however, said that such moves are the nature of the NFL business -- especially when it comes to kickers.
"Golly, if you just look around the league, very few guys are like (longtime former Carolina Panthers kicker) John Kasay where they stay with that team forever," McMahon said. "If you look around the league at some of the guys that have been on a team, then they go through a tough time, then all of a sudden they resurface. So it happens. No different than probably a golfer, or anybody else. You've just got to kind of push through it. And heck we're at this run right now and just thought it was the best thing, Coach (Sean Payton) felt like it was the best thing for our team."
Sure enough, more than half of the current kickers in the NFL have kicked for more than one team in their careers -- including 7 of the top-10 leaders in field goals made this year.
When asked if he thinks Hartley will get another opportunity somewhere, McMahon said, "Absolutely. Absolutely."