Johnny Townsend, P, Florida
6’1”, 210 lbs
2017: 64 Punts, 47.5 AVG, 27 Punts inside the 20
2016: 64 Punts, 47.9 AVG, 27 Punts inside the 20
2015: 83 Punts, 45.4 AVG, 30 Punts inside the 20
2014: 29 Punts, 29.0 AVG, 6 Punts inside the 20
2017 Second-Team All-American
2017 First-Team All-SEC
2016 First-Team All-American
2016 First-Team All-SEC
2016 SEC Academic Honor Roll
2015 Second-Team All-SEC
2015 SEC Academic Honor Roll
2014 SEC Academic Honor Roll
This past season, Townsend became Florida’s all-time leading punter in program history with 11,090 yards and 240 total punts. He has a cannon for a leg and his 47.5 yards-per-punt ranked second in the FBS this past year. In 2016, Townsend led all of college football with a 47.9 yard average distance on his kicks.
The SEC’s all-time leader in career yards-per-punt (46.2) was also considered one of the best directional punters in the 2018 NFL Draft. The Raiders also signed Florida kicker Eddy Pineiro in free agency after a great career with the Gators, and Townsend has familiarity as he was Pineiro’s placekick holder in college as well.
The only negatives evaluators have found with the former Gator is that he too often out-kicks his coverage and that he has no experience as a kickoff specialist.
Fit with Raiders
After moving on from Marquette King, it seems the Raiders have found their new punter. He can also take over as placekick holder. He has only held for right footed kickers, mainly for Pineiro at Florida, but he said he has the ability to hold for a left footed kicker as well, in case Giorgio Tavecchio is the Raiders’ kicker again this year. As the team’s 5th round pick, Townsend is the favorite to win the starting job over former UC Davis punter Colby Wadman.
Shane Lechler and King made their money with their monster legs as well as held on field goal attempts and it seems Townsend is ready to step-in as the next punter with a cannon. If he can improve his accuracy, he could become one of the better players at his position in the NFL.