FOXBOROUGH -- The Patriots will host the Chiefs Sunday afternoon in one of their biggest games of the season, and yet they still do not have a kicker.
A kicker was not at practice Thursday (neither were Ted Karras and Byron Cowart). So what are the Patriots' options?
The team tried to get rookie Chase McLaughlin Wednesday after he was waived by the 49ers, but the Colts also put in a claim too and they are higher in priority than New England, so he is now in Indianapolis.
Nick Folk, who was released last week after needing an appendectomy, could be an option, but it's only been a week after the procedure and he no longer had a locker in the Patriots locker room on Wednesday. If he was healthy enough to kick, it's likely he would have already been added by now.
Kai Forbath is another option after kicking last week in Houston, but released Monday -- although he did miss an extra point that was an extra five yards following a penalty. If Folk isn't ready, he may be the next best option considering he's already had a game working with long-snapper Joe Cardona and holder Jake Bailey.
Other outside-the-box options are Bailey, who hasn't kicked since high school, but that would also require a new holder and could throw off the entire operation. In addition, some have called for Nate Ebner to drop kick, but that isn't really possible with the extra point being pushed back. Also thrown out there is going for a two-point conversion each time and not attempting field goals, but that doesn't seem like the best option against a good team like Kansas City. And it's not like the Patriots have had much success inside the 5-yard line this season.
With all that being said, kicker is one of the few positions where a player could be added the day before the game and play, and it would be just fine.