The most interesting position battle of the offseason is taking place in Tampa, between kickers Roberto Aguayo and Nick Folk.
Aguayo was drafted by the Buccaneers in the second round of the 2016 NFL draft, making him the highest-drafted kicker in a decade. But his rookie season was a dud. He made just 22 of 31 field goals. It forced the team to bring in veteran Nick Folk to compete for the job heading into the 2017 season.
Tuesday on the accuracy goal posts, which are much more narrow than a normal set, Folk outkicked Aguayo in a small sample on the team’s first day of OTAs.
On the accuracy goal posts (from about 35-40 yards)— Trevor Sikkema (@TampaBayTre) May 23, 2017
Folk: 4-for-4 pic.twitter.com/6GOaMS6FDr
Head coach Dirk Koetter played off the importance of Tuesday’s results. “I don't think we should probably decide any competition based on four kicks,” he said via ESPN’s Jenna Laine. “Nick got the best of it today and they'll be out there going at it again tomorrow.”
Earlier in the week, Aguayo told PewterReport.com he was motivated by the competition.
“I look at it like playing golf,” Aguayo said. “When you go out there playing by yourself you are playing to shoot par or shoot your best, but when you have someone else out there it’s like, ‘Well he hit a good shot so I want to hit a good shot.’”
Augayo was the best kicker in college football during his days at Florida State, making 267 of his 276 kicks in three years. The Buccaneers would like to see him return to that form, and will hope having Folk over his shoulder will be the right kick to get Aguayo back to his old self.
The best part about this competition is that we’ll get to watch it for ourselves, since the Buccaneers will be featured on HBO’s Hard Knocks.