Preds waive kicker, get Upchurch back

February 7, 2005 - Arena Football League (1987-2008) (AFL I) - Orlando Predators

News Release

ORLANDO, Fla. -- As expected, the Orlando Predators cut ties with kicker Steve McLaughlin, waiving the seven-year AFL veteran on Monday. McLaughlin was signed just prior to the start of the 2005 season to replace All-Arena kicker Jay Taylor.

One of the all-time kicking leaders in Arena Football League history, McLaughlin struggled in his two games with the Predators, missing seven of 13 extra points and all four field goal attempts.

“Steve was a 90% career kicker on extra points in his career but for some reason couldn’t get it together for us,” Predators Head Coach Jay Gruden said. “The effort was there, but not the results. Steve is a professional and understood that we had to make a change.”

Gruden said that the Predators should have an announcement on a new kicker on Tuesday or Wednesday of this week. “We’re talking to another veteran kicker now,” Gruden added. “We should have an announcement in another day or so.”

On Monday, the Predators added some much needed depth on the line. David Upchurch, a promising 6-3, 302-lb. defensive lineman from West Virginia University, was activated from the Predators’ NFL-Exempt list.

Upchurch spent the 2003 season on the Pittsburgh Steelers practice squad and went to camp with the Steelers in 2004. After being released, he signed with the Predators but was then signed by the San Diego Chargers. He was released over the weekend.

A former team captain at WVU, Upchurch was a three-year starter for the Mountaineers. He ranks third on the school’s career list with 35 tackles-for-loss.

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