Colts owners Jim Irsay hasn’t ruled out a potential return for Vinatieri, according to CBS Sports.
However, Vinatieri is coming off his worst season of his career and season-ending knee surgery.
He finished with a career-low in field goal percentage and extra point percentage for the Colts last season.
Vinatieri was placed on injured reverse in December due to a knee injury, but it appears he’ll be ready in time for camp.
Free agency is looming for the 47-year-old kicker, but should the Colts give Vinatieri one more chance to ride off into the sunset in glory?
Irsay: Adam Vinatieri. Last game as a Colt? I don't know. Rehabbing knee. Like to give 'my people' room to make mistakes. Adam knows how much I think of him.
— Mike Chappell (@mchappell51) February 23, 2020
It doesn’t sound like the Colts have committed to moving on from Vinatieri, but he might have to earn his job in camp.
He connected on 7-of-12 field goal attempts last season during his 12 games with the Colts.
Vinatieri landed only 5-of-12 field goals from 40-plus yards, so he’ll need to show improvement if he wants to stay in Indy next season.
His field goal percentage has been declining since 2014, but is it time to close the book on Vinatieri’s historic career?
Vinatieri’s 68% extra point percentage last season was the lowest of his career.
Irsay on if Adam Vinatieri has played his final game with the #Colts:
“I know he’s rehabbing that knee, and it’s something Chris and Frank will talk about and give their opinion to me."
— Andrew Walker (@AWalkerColts) February 23, 2020
The Colts brought in Chase McLaughlin after Vinatieri went down with season-ending knee surgery in December.
McLaughlin landed in Indy after he was waived by the San Francisco 49ers in early December.
San Francisco was actually McLaughlin’s third team of the season, so McLaughlin changed uniforms quite often last season.
McLaughlin was 13-for-17 on field-goal attempts and a perfect 15-for-15 on extra-point attempts before arriving in Indy.
During his four games in Indy, McLaughlin connected on 5-of-6 field goals and 11-for-11 on extra-point attempts.
He certainly finished his season on a strong note, but was it enough to earn him the job as kicker for the Colts next season?
Colts signed WR Zach Pascal, TE Mo Alie-Cox and kicker Chase McLaughlin to one-year contract extensions.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 30, 2019
The Colts saw enough promise from McLaughlin that they signed him to a one-year extension.
That means Vinatieri must be close to perfect in order to earn himself the kicker role in Indy next season.
The Colts want to remain professional and sound willingly to give Vinatieri a shot in camp, but it sounds like an uphill battle for him.
The 47-year-old may decide to call it a career if he’s unable to land the job in Indy, but the best kicker should be on the team going forward.
It’s unlikely that the organization is going to carry two kickers on the active roster, so the McLaughlin extension makes it seem that they are leaning one way despite saying they haven’t closed the book on Vinatieri.
Adam Vinatieri just became the NFL's all-time points leader.
But this might be the most impressive play of his career …pic.twitter.com/ovOll9Pmqw
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) October 28, 2018
Vinatieri should be remembered for his incredible accomplishments if he does decide to call it a career this summer.
He has the most points scored in NFL history and the most field goals made in the history of the league.
Vinatieri was selected to the Pro Bowl three times over the course of his historic 24-year career.
He has four Super Bowl rings to go along with his long list of accolades.
Hopefully, the Colts give Vinatieri a chance to earn a spot on the roster, but regardless he should always be remembered as one of the best kickers to play in the NFL.