Continued from page 1

He set a franchise record and tied for the NFL lead with six made field goals from 50 yards or more. He was the only NFL kicker with three or more attempts from 50 yards or more without a miss from that distance.

“I’m really excited to be back in Carolina,” Gano said. “It is where my family and I wanted to be. I love the organization and feel this is the best place for me.”

Rivera said: “The special teams unit was a large part of our success last year and we are excited to keep Graham as a part of our team. Graham has shown range and accuracy in his field goal kicking, and his strong leg has been a weapon for us on kickoffs.”

Of his 82 kickoffs, 76 reached the end zone, including 63 for touchbacks, the highest percentage in the NFL since 1994.

A five-year NFL veteran, Gano spent his first three seasons with the Washington Redskins. He has converted 92 of 118 field goal attempts in his career.

Gano feels like he has some stability on the team, which has helped his game.

“When I was in Washington I went through four holders and that took some getting used to,” Gano said. “I finally got comfortable there and made my last 14 of 17 field goals. I’ve carried over that consistency to Carolina.”

Gano said he was celebrating the new deal by taking his son to Chic-fil-A.

___

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and http://twitter.com/AP_NFL.