View Full Version : Regarding Daniel Sepulveda...

Mr. Goosemahn
01-03-2011, 06:20 PM
I'm noticing that many people don't want him back next year and I'm not very sure why. He is a pretty good punter, but he's not getting the credit he deserves, and it baffles me. This is a pretty long post, but it's a good read, IMO. Basically, I'll explain why Sepulveda is a good punter, not a bad one, and we should definitely keep him for next year (and many more to come).

Sepulveda, is not an elite punter, but he's a pretty good one, much better than Berger, much better than Kapinos, and I'm retty sure he's better than almost all punters available in either the draft or free agency. Allow me to show why:

For starters, Sepulveda doesn't earn that much. He signed a one year, $1.01 million dollar contract before this season started. That's probably the lowest salary for any starter on our team, except maybe Suisham.

Now, focusing in on stats and what they mean, here are the basic ones:

Average Yards per Punt: 45.5 (4th best in the AFC)
1. Shane Lechler, Oakland - 47
2. Mike Scifres, San Diego - 46.7
3. Brandon Fields, Miami - 46.2
4. Daniel Sepulveda, Pittsburgh - 45.5

Net Average Yards per Punt: 39.1 (tied for 4th best in the AFC)
1. Shane Lechler, Oakland -
2. Sam Kock, Baltimore -
2. Adam Podlesh, Jacksonville -
4. Brett Kern, Tennessee - 39.1
4. Daniel Sepulveda, Pittsburgh - 39.1

Furthermore, he had no punts blocked and no punts returned for a TD, which is both a testament to his ability and the rest of our ST unit.

Finally, return yards. This stat can be a little tricky to measure and evaluate, but IMO it shows one very important detail that other stats don't:

How well does the punt travel with our ST players.

Basically, a great punt has two components: distance and hangtime. If a punt travels a long distance, that's great, but it's useless if it had no hangtime. The more hangtime a punt has, the more time defenders have to get to the returner. If the defenders start closing in on the returner, a fair catch will be called. This is one area where I felt Sepulveda did a great job, and is shows in the stats:

Among punters with more than 50 punts (real punters, not QB's, K's, or other players who ocasionally punt), Sepulveda ranked 4th with 198 yards in 56 punts.
1. Adam Podlesh, Jacksonville - 123 yards in 57 punts
2. Kevin Huber, Cincinnati - 124 in 71 punts
3. Zoltan Mesko, New England - 179 in 58 punts
4. Daniel Sepulveda, Pittsburgh - 198 in 56 punts

Again, this stat is also a testament to our ST unit, but my theory that Sepulveda does a good job in balancing distance and hangtime is reinforced by the fact that Sepulveda is 4th in the AFC in fair catches. That is, Sepulveda is the 4th punter that causes most fair catches.
1. Steve Weatherford, New York Jets - 27 in 84 punts
2. Sam Koch, Baltimore - 22 in 81 punts
2. Pat McAfee, Indianapolis - 22 in 65 punts
4. Daniel Sepulveda, Pittsburgh - 21 in 56 punts

Finally, one stat that is also useful to have is touchbacks. Sometimes they are good, sometime they are bad, usually though, they are useful to prevent returns. For example, yesterday's game vs. the Browns. Every time we kicked off we used a squib kick to make sure that Cribbs was less likely to end up with the ball. It was extremely effective. Same thing with touchbacks. Make sure the returner doesn't get the ball.

- Sepulveda is third in the AFC in touchbacks with 8.
1. Dustin Colquitt, Kansas City - 10
2. Mike Scifres, San Diego - 9
3. Daniel Sepulveda, Pittsburgh - 8

So I ask you, do you really want to let Sepulveda walk? He's (statistically, at least) a top 5 punter in almost all the important categories, AND he's still young (26). Shane Lechler is 34, Mike Scifres is 30, Mat McBriar is 31, etc.

Sepulveda is a pretty darn good punter and I'm very happy we have him on the team. You guys should be happy to have him too. It's a shame he's having trouble with his ACL, but there is no way I would want him to leave without a clear, and better, replacement for him.

Oh, and btw, the stats come from NFL.com's NFL Stats by Player:

edit: regarding Kapinos, he's been average-below average thus far. Couple of good kicks, and better than Berger XD

edit2: league wise, not just AFC wise, here's how me measures up.
Average yards per punt: 7th
Net average yards per punt: 6th
Return Yards: 5th
Fair catches: 7th
Touchbacks: 6th

01-03-2011, 07:23 PM
I'll agree there is no reason not to try and re-sign him as he won't cost much... He is still young and is very good. It's just that he has now tore his ACL 3 times I believe?

Unless there is a good punter we can snag later in the draft he'll be back....

How has Kapinos been doing, stat wise?

01-03-2011, 07:25 PM
I like the guy and hope he stays. However, I'm afraid that with his bum knee (acl) that has been repaired what, three times that his lower leg just might fly off his knee next year after a punt. It could happen, I'm a doctor, I know these things.

01-03-2011, 07:59 PM
Sep has been a very good punter for the Steelers, who are rich in tradition of left footed punters (except for Berger and the other toad back in 08). Can anyone name the last right footed punter for the Steelers other than the 2 toads in 2008?

Biggest issue is his ACL which has now been torn in both knees. Otherwise, he is a good punter. Kapinos has done well so far - will be a tough call at the end of the season as for who to keep.

01-03-2011, 08:41 PM
I think Sepulveda is a very good punter and someone I'd like to see re-signed, but most likely the decision will be made by the Steelers medical staff. If they think he can come back healthy/strong then there's no issue, if they think otherwise then we might be looking for a new punter.

01-03-2011, 09:06 PM
I didn't know people didn't want him back next year. Everyone here seems to want him back..

01-03-2011, 09:51 PM
why wouldnt we want him back? the guy is a great punter, just has a lil bad luck with injury.

01-03-2011, 09:58 PM
I dont want him back, he has torn his ACL three times in 4 years. So, during the playoffs we are stuck with crappy punters. I either want a kicker who can punt well or I want a new punter. Sep is a good punter but not amazing, so why deal with the injuries when we can get somebody else who can do just as good

01-03-2011, 10:59 PM
Injury prone as hell for being a punter...A bit overrated, but good at pinning.

01-04-2011, 11:53 AM
I think he's a real solid punter, hell we spent a high draft pick on him and he's done well for us. I know he's had injury problems and that's something the coaches will have to talk about this offseason. Fortunately punters are not all THAT hard to replace; meaning it's not like trying to replace a RB or QB when they go down. At the same time the NFL is a what have you done for me lately business and Danny hasn't been healthy enough to finish out a full season most of the time.

I'd personally like to see him back.

01-04-2011, 12:03 PM
Injury prone get rid of him while we can, he's a PUNTER, we won a SB with a VERY bad punter in Berger and hell he was hurt half the time too. They are a dime a dozen too it's just a bonus when they can pin it.

Did berger even avg 40 yards?

K Train
01-04-2011, 12:25 PM
sepulveda is my boy and always has been....they would be idiots to not resign him

01-04-2011, 03:55 PM
Injury prone get rid of him while we can, he's a PUNTER, we won a SB with a VERY bad punter in Berger and hell he was hurt half the time too. They are a dime a dozen too it's just a bonus when they can pin it.

Did berger even avg 40 yards?

Ironically enough, Berger had a tremendous superbowl punting the ball. By far, his best game all season.

M. Berger 3 139 46.3 0 1 49

01-04-2011, 05:35 PM
Sepulveda is a good punter. I don't know why people think otherwise. He won us the game against the Bills punting from the back of our own endzone in OT. I'd sign him back in a heartbeat.

K Train
01-04-2011, 05:52 PM
the knee is a concern, but when hes healthy hes one of the best.

see: aaron smith....arms are in shambles...torn this and torn that, but when hes out there hes perfect

01-04-2011, 06:38 PM
You know what you get with D-Sep. With other guys, it's hit or miss (no pun intended).
Hopefully he get's healthy and comes back in '11 to help the team.

And yes, he did win that game for the Steelers in Buffalo with an absolute bomb.

01-05-2011, 09:26 PM
I could see the Steelers giving him another chance to stick around and stay healthy. They aren't the type of team to dump a quality player just because of some injury problems. His production certainly isn't an issue, hopefully he can put this behind him and when he gets healthy for 2011 he can stay that way.

01-05-2011, 10:36 PM
Keep him he's a great punter , lets get a kicker that can kickoff in the endzone .That way we could instantly improve on special teams.We have had trouble with good returners for ages .