Navy Reserve Lt. j.g. Joe Cardona will be staying put at his day job.
The 2015 Naval Academy graduate has signed a four-year contract to remain the New England Patriots long snapper, per ESPN’s Mike Reiss and other reports. Drafted in the fifth round by the Pats in 2015, Cardona’s been the team’s long snapper ever since, making two Super Bowl appearances.
He spoke to Military Times about his first title, where he ended up a spectator for one of the greatest sports comebacks ever: After snapping for Steven Gostkowski’s successful 33-yard field goal with less than 10 minutes left in the game, the Patriots wouldn’t need a long snapper for punts or field goals for the rest of their improbable rally.
Terms of Cardona’s deal weren’t disclosed. He’s one of a handful of academy graduates in the NFL, including Air Force grad Ben Garland (who recently re-signed with the Atlanta Falcons) and Pro Bowl offensive lineman Alejandro Villanueva, a West Pointer who inked a four-year deal last year to remain a Pittsburgh Steeler. Cardona’s fellow Midshipman Keenan Reynolds reportedly has been turning heads in Seattle, and Air Force grad Garrett Griffin will try to keep his roster spot in New Orleans, where he saw action for the last month of the 2017 season.