Tennessee Titans punter Brett Kern is headed to the Pro Bowl for the first time in his 10-year NFL career.
“To be working at it for as long as I have, it’s always been a goal of mine to get to the Pro Bowl,” Kern said. “I know in certain circumstances throughout the year, you just asked to do certain things, whether it’s to pin a team deep, which your gross average might suffer a little bit. It’s always a goal, and I’m really blessed to be able to go this year.”
Kern’s outstanding work has him on track to break a 77-year-old NFL record for gross punting average held by Hall of Famer Sammy Baugh, who set the mark of 51.4 yards per punt in 1940 for the Washington Redskins.
Kern, who came to the Titans off waivers from Denver in 2009, is averaging 51.6 yards per punt on 62 punts this season with two games remaining this season. He also has a 45.6-yard net average with 22 punts downed inside the 20 and only five touchbacks.
He credits special teams coach Steve Hoffman with having a hand in his success this year.
“I’ve been working with Coach Hoff and just kind of working on different punts and certain situations that come up. He has been a huge help. He told me before the season started that this was going to be my best year,” Kern said.
Kern will be joined at the Jan. 29 Pro Bowl in Orlando, Fla, by two Titans teammates – defensive end Jurrell Casey and left tackle Taylor Lewan. Casey is going to the Pro Bowl for the third straight year and Lewan is headed there for the second consecutive season.
“It’s definitely amazing,” Casey said. “It shows the respect for the hard work you put out there, and the coaches, players and fans, they see it. That’s what it’s all about, that my peers and the coaches around this league respect my game.”