AFC East roster bubble: Dan Carpenter

With training camp just around the corner, the AFC East blog takes a look at players who will battle for roster spots this summer.

On Friday, we take a look at Miami Dolphins veteran kicker Dan Carpenter.

Reason for hope: Carpenter was solid for the Dolphins for four seasons until finally hitting a rough patch in 2012. Perhaps it was just an off year for Carpenter, who missed some key kicks that could have won Miami more games last season. The Dolphins coaching staff is giving Carpenter every opportunity to prove that was the case. Carpenter must beat out rookie fifth-round pick Caleb Sturgis in training camp to keep his job.

Reason for concern: Money could be the biggest deterrent for Carpenter. He is to make $2.68 million in the final year of his contract. That’s a lot of money for a kicker coming off a shaky season. On the other hand, Sturgis would cost just $405,000 this season. As long as the competition is relatively close, there’s no reason for Miami to overpay for the position with Carpenter. Sturgis has four years left on his contract and a very strong leg. Due mostly to financial concerns, Sturgis is a sizable favorite to unseat Carpenter.

Chances of Carpenter making the 53-man roster: 20 percent