The Cincinnati Bengals invited five punters to Paul Brown on Tuesday in response to losing Kevin Huber for the year with a fracture jaw and cracked vertebrae in his neck. One of the names included former Bills punter Shawn Powell. On Tuesday the team announced that they've signed Powell and placed Kevin Huber on Injured Reserve.
Powell, who set a Bills rookie record with a gross punting average of 44.0 yards/kick, is a second-year player that spent two seasons and 18 games in Buffalo. He was signed midway through the 2012 season after the team released Brian Moorman, but erratic results forced the Bills to release him on Oct. 4, 2013.
Powell earned consensus All-American awards for punting, earning first-team All-American honors from the Walter Camp Foundation, the American Football Coaches Association and most media outlets (ESPN.com, Rivals.com). His 47-plus yard average in 2011 (his final season at Florida State) was tops in FBS college football with nearly half (24) of his 50 punts traveling over 50 yards -- 23 were downed inside the 20 and 14 inside the ten-yard line.
Huber will finished the season ranked eight in the NFL with a net punting average of 40.5 yards/kick. On Dec. 1 at San Diego, he tied a franchise record for longest punt (75 yards). He is the Bengals’ all-time leader in gross punting average (44.2), net average (39.1) and ratio of inside-20 kicks to touchbacks (3.69-to-1). Last year he set Bengals season records for gross average (46.6) and net (42.0).