2021 NFL Draft Profile: New Mexico P Tyson Dyer
Can Dyer become the latest Lobos specialist to make an impact in the NFL?
Punters are still people, too.
You’d be forgiven for overlooking New Mexico as a hotbed for NFL talent at first glance, but the Lobos have landed a couple of very good specialists in the pro ranks over the last few years. Corey Bojorquez spent the last three years as a punter in Buffalo and led the league in yards per punt in 2020, while kicker Jason Sanders parlayed his standing as a seventh-round draft selection into an All-Pro campaign last season.
Tyson Dyer looks to be the next link in what has become a productive pipeline, but he has a surprising amount of competition at the position because, as with pretty much every other position in this year’s draft class, punter is deep.
Height – 6’2″
Weight – 212 pounds
40-yard time – 4.95 seconds
Arm length – 30 3/4″
Hand size – 9 1/4″
Wingspan – 75 3/4″
Throughout his tenure in Albuquerque, Dyer made a pretty strong case as being one of the best punters in the Group of 5 not named Ryan Stonehouse. He averaged 44.1 yards per punt across three seasons with the Lobos, good for fifth on the all-time career list in the Mountain West.
Dyer also set the New Mexico school record with an 84-yard bomb back in 2018, but that was hardly an aberration because he had 44 total kicks of at least 50 yards. And for his career, Dyer also dropped 42% of his kicks inside the opponents’ 20-yard line, all of which explains why he was named a Ray Guy Award semifinalist in 2019.
How concerned will NFL teams be with a drop-off in performance? Looking at the year-over-year numbers, it’s pretty clear that Dyer’s 2020 campaign didn’t live up to expectations. A decent showing at the 2021 Hula Bowl and an okay pro day back in March didn’t really do much to move the needle, either. At 28 years old, Dyer is also older than many other draft prospects at the position, meaning there is probably less margin for error should he find his way to a rookie mini-camp.
As you might suspect already, it’s pretty hard for any punter to hear his name called at the NFL Draft: Only eleven players at the position have been picked in the last five seasons. There also appears to be a consensus about this year’s most likely candidates to make it twelve or thirteen, namely Kentucky’s Max Duffy and Cincinnati’s James Smith, so Dyer’s ultimate fate is probably that of a free agent who will have to perform his way onto a preseason roster over the summer.