A. J. Cole
Cole with the Las Vegas Raiders in 2019
No. 6 – Las Vegas Raiders
Position:Punter
Personal information
Born: (1995-11-27) November 27, 1995 (age 26)
Atlanta, Georgia
Height:6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Weight:220 lb (100 kg)
Career information
High school:Woodward Academy
(College Park, Georgia)
College:NC State
Undrafted:2019
Career history
Roster status:Active
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of 2021
Punts:175
Punting yards:8,222
Average punt:47.0
Inside 20:81
Player stats at NFL.com · PFR

A. J. Cole III (born November 27, 1995) is an American football punter for the Las Vegas Raiders of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at North Carolina State.

Early life and high school

Cole grew up in College Park, Georgia and attended Woodward Academy, where he played football, basketball, and soccer. As a senior, Cole was named All-Metro Area by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.[1]

College career

Cole was a four year starter at punter for the NC State Wolfpack. He finished his collegiate career with 9,288 punting yards (third-highest in school history) and averaged 42.2 yards per punt.[2] He was a finalist for the Wuerffel Trophy as a junior and a semifinalist for the award as a senior.[3] In 2017 Cole was awarded Honorable Mention All-American honors by GPR Analytics.[4]

Professional career

Pre-draft measurables
Height Weight Arm length Hand span
6 ft 4+18 in
(1.93 m)
217 lb
(98 kg)
33+38 in
(0.85 m)
8+34 in
(0.22 m)
All values from Pro Day[5][6]

Cole was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Oakland Raiders on May 6, 2019 after participating in a rookie mini camp with the team.[7] He beat out incumbent punter Johnny Townsend during training camp to make the Raiders 53 man roster.[8]

Cole made his NFL debut on September 9, 2019 against the Denver Broncos, punting three times for 134 yards (44.7 average).[9] Cole finished his rookie season with 67 punts for 3,081 yards (46.0 yards per punt).[10] In the 2020 season Cole punted 44 times for an average of 44.1 yards.[11]

2021 season

On December 9, 2021, Cole signed a four-year, $12.4 million contract extension with the Raiders.[12] On December 20, 2021, Cole was named to the 2022 NFL Pro Bowl.[13] Cole would lead the league among qualified punters in yards per punt in 2021, averaging 50 yards per punt.[14] Cole would receive first team All-Pro distinction in 2021.

References

  1. ^ Saye, Chris (December 28, 2013). "High school All-Metro teams". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved September 2, 2019.
  2. ^ Smith, R. Cory (August 14, 2019). "A.J. Cole is the lone punter on Raiders training camp roster". 247Sports.com. Retrieved September 2, 2019.
  3. ^ "Cole Named Semifinalist for 2018 Wuerffel Trophy". GoPack.com. November 1, 2018. Retrieved September 2, 2019.
  4. ^ "GPR Punt Rating". Gpr2017. Archived from the original on September 26, 2019. Retrieved September 26, 2019.
  5. ^ "A.J. Cole III, North Carolina State, P, 2019 NFL Draft Scout, NCAA College Football". draftscout.com. Retrieved December 8, 2021.
  6. ^ "A.J. Cole, Combine Results, P - North Carolina State". nflcombineresults.com. Retrieved December 8, 2021.
  7. ^ Bradham, Matthew (May 6, 2019). "NC State's P AJ Cole Signs Free Agent Deal with the Raiders". PackInsider.com. Retrieved September 2, 2019.
  8. ^ Williams, Doug (August 14, 2019). "Rookie A.J. Cole Wins Raiders Punting Job". NBC Bay Area. Retrieved September 2, 2019.
  9. ^ Tucker, Tristan (September 10, 2019). "NC State quarterbacks shine in entertaining week one games". Technician. Retrieved September 12, 2019.
  10. ^ "Raiders In Review: AJ Cole taking control". RaiderRamble.com. January 5, 2020. Retrieved February 6, 2020.
  11. ^ Lamarre, Tom (July 8, 2021). "Raiders Get Their Kicks Out of Carlson and Cole". SI.com. Retrieved September 14, 2021.
  12. ^ Raiders Public Relations (December 9, 2021). "Daniel Carlson and AJ Cole sign multi-year extensions with the Raiders". Raiders.com. Retrieved December 11, 2021.
  13. ^ Raiders Public Relations (December 20, 2021). "Maxx Crosby, AJ Cole, Denzel Perryman named 2022 Pro Bowlers". Raiders.com. Retrieved December 20, 2021.
  14. ^ "AJ Cole III Stats". pro-football-reference.com. January 9, 2022. Retrieved January 14, 2022.