|About Legacy Kicking
LEGacy Kicking carries on the legacy of NFL punter/kicker Craig Hentrich.
For 17 years, Hentrich was one of the NFL’s most valuable field position weapons and a perennial presence among its punting leaders. His innovative knuckleball punt made him one of the league’s best at downing punts inside the opponent’s 20-yard line, and his versatility made him a vital team asset.
His achievements include 3 Super Bowl appearances, 2 Pro Bowl selections, and numerous franchise records. Now, Hentrich invites you to share his legacy through kicking and punting instruction.
About Craig Hentrich
"It's very hard in this game to walk away on your own terms, and Craig is doing that today," said Jeff Fisher, head coach of the Tennessee Titans, speaking of Craig Hentrich’s decision to retire after the 2008/2009 season. "Craig was a tremendous athlete at the punter position, and his versatility and consistency were some of the reasons for our success over his time with us. He wasn't only a punter; he was a holder, field goal kicker, kickoff guy and a passer. He was a great teammate and an unselfish player."
Throughout his career, Hentrich truly exemplified versatility and consistency. He was willing and able to play multiple roles to contribute to his team’s success, and he continually exhibited excellence in his playing. His career achievements are nothing short of astounding, setting numerous franchise records and ranking among the game’s all-time best in punting and kicking. Furthermore, Hentrich’s innovative “knuckleball punt,” which falls to the ground unpredictably due to its lack of rotation, contributed to his reputation as one of the league’s best at downing punts inside the opponent’s 20-yard line. Throughout his NFL career, Hentrich developed a tradition of excellence—a tradition he is now passing on to a younger generation of kickers and punters.
Hentrich spent his childhood playing soccer and kicking footballs over the goalpost in the back yard of his home in Godfrey, Illinois. In high school, he lettered in baseball, basketball, and football with the Marquette Explorers. And while he played multiple positions in football, his true calling emerged when he honed his focus to kicking and punting. He set an Illinois state record with 26 career field goals on 44 attempts and was an All-American selection by Parade, SuperPrep, and USA Today, earning football scholarship offers from numerous colleges across the country.
When Hentrich’s journey took him to the University of Notre Dame, he continued to excel. He lettered four years with the Fighting Irish as a kicker, punter and kick-off specialist and finished his college career with a record 44.1-yard punting average and ranking second in field goals (39 of 56 attempts). He also ranked second on the school’s all-time scoring list with 294 points, the most ever by an Irish kicker, and made a record 98.3 percent (177/180) of his point after touchdown attempts.
In 1993, Hentrich was drafted by the New York Jets but soon signed with the Green Bay Packers, where he began his stellar 17-year NFL career. In Green Bay, he served in a variety of positions—punter, holder, place kicker, and kick-off specialist—helping the team achieve a world championship in Super Bowl XXXI and setting the Packers record—which still stands—for gross punt average in a single season.
Hentrich then signed with the Tennessee Oilers (later renamed the Tennessee Titans) in 1998, where he remained for the rest of his career. A true weapon as a punter, he also filled a variety of other roles with the Titans, including those of holder, kick-off specialist, place kicker and even quarterback on the occasional fake punt. And throughout his tenure with the Titans, Hentrich was continually a model of consistency. He holds multiple franchise punting records, including most career punts, highest season punt average, highest career net punt average and fourth most games played in Titans/Oilers History.
During the course of his career, Hentrich played in 241 games, tied for fifth in NFL history among punters. His 1,150 career punts are tied for seventh place in NFL history. One of the league’s top specialists in terms of ball placement, his career 36.8-yard net average ranks 10th in the NFL in the 33 seasons the statistic has been tracked. Likewise, his total of 34.7 percent of punts placed inside the 20 yard line ranks second all-time in league history. He earned two Pro Bowl honors, played in three Super Bowls including one Championship, and his teams reached the playoffs in 10 of his 16 playing seasons. He is one of only two players in NFL history to record 100 postseason punts.
As Hentrich reflects on his many career achievements, he states, “I think overall it was a successful career and I wouldn’t trade a second of it. Consistency is what I’ve tried to pride myself on my whole career. A lot of guys can go out and kick 60-yard punts all day, but 60-yard punts are going to be taken back for touchdowns, so I really tried to pride myself on not trying to outkick my coverage, being consistent, doing the things they ask me to do.”
And now, Hentrich is passing on his tradition of consistency and versatility to a new generation of kickers and punters with his kicking and punting instruction business, LEGacy Kicking, LLC. Hentrich brings his considerable knowledge of the art of punting, kicking, and holding to the table, and combined with his passion for helping younger players achieve excellence, that knowledge is helping develop the skills of a wide range of players, from beginning level youth to more advanced, NFL-caliber kickers and punters.
Hentrich has developed a strong legacy of excellence in kicking and punting. He now aims to help others share in that legacy.