TAMPA – The Tampa Bay Buccaneers plans to provide place kicker Connor Barth with some training camp competition hit a bit of a snag Thursday when fellow kicker Nate Kaeding announced his retirement. Kaeding’s agent, Rick Smith, confirmed Kaeding’s decision, saying Kaeding is suffering from a chronic groin problem that affects his kicking motion and has no medical solution. “It flared up last week and so Nick has decided to retire,’’ Smith told the Tampa Tribune. The Bucs signed Kaeding, 31, earlier in the offseason primary in an effort to limit Barth’s offseason work and guard against injury but also to give the Bucs’ kicker some competition to stay sharp.
A University of Iowa product, Kaeding spent nine years in the NFL, the first eight with the San Diego Chargers. Kaeding started the 2012 season with the Chargers as well but was released and later signed with the Miami Dolphins. Kaeding appeared in two games with the Dolphins, making just one of three field goal attempts and having one blocked. He was 181-for-210 with five blocks and a long kick of 57 yards for his career.