Minnesota Vikings hire former Hawkeye Kaeding as kicking consultant

Former Iowa kicker Nate Kaeding has found a new role in the NFL.


The Daily Iowan; Photos by Josep

Former Iowa kicker Nate Kaeding talks with Big Ten’s Michelle McMahon during the Big Ten Network tailgate live show before the Iowa/Ohio State football game in Hubbard Park on the University of Iowa campus on Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. The Hawkeyes will hope to defeat the Buckeyes for the first time since 2004. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Pete Ruden, Sports Editor

Former Iowa kicker Nate Kaeding has made a living in Iowa City, but he will now spend more time in Minneapolis.

Because of a lack of stability at kicker, the Minnesota Vikings recently hired Kaeding as a kicking consultant.

His NFL experience will certainly give him a boost in his new role. In his nine-year NFL career, most of which came with the San Diego Chargers, Kaeding knocked through 181 field goals with a percentage of 86.2. He ranks as the ninth-most accurate kicker in NFL history.

In his time at Iowa (2000-03), Kaeding hit 67 of his 84 field-goal attempts including a 41-of-45 mark in his final two seasons. He also won the Lou Groza Award in 2002, given to the nation’s best kicker.

Minnesota signed kicker Dan Bailey to a one-year deal in March. Bailey made 21 kicks in 28 attempts in 14 games with the Vikings last season, and he has a career field goal percentage of 86.6.

Viking head coach Mike Zimmer expects that Kaeding will return to Minneapolis during training camp and said Kaeding has made trips to Minneapolis a couple times a week and has stayed in communication.

Kaeding has also played a big role in the development of Iowa City in recent years, opening numerous restaurants and businesses.

“You got to have somebody who really wants to do it, too,” Zimmer said. “Nate had other jobs going on, and to be able to come in here and do this a couple days a week and get away from his other job and still be specific with it, you have to want to do this.”