Well, we've reached that point of over-scrutinizing specialists in training camp: sports journalists are now charting Roberto Aguayo's kicks, and noting every miss on Twitter. That happened some before the weekend, but it was mostly ignored -- after all, kicks are frequent in training camp, and misses will happen. It's the games that matter.
One problem: the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' second-round kicker has looked less than impressive in games. And now he's struggling in practice. A lot. Apparently. According to Roy Cummings, he missed three of his six kicks today, one of them kicked into the line. He apparently shanked one really badly.
That is more than a little worrying, but the scrutiny is also getting somewhat absurd. Pat Donovan of 620 WDAE said Aguayo had one of the worst misses he'd ever seen, and called his misses a 'thing', JoeBucsFan said that "Kyle Brindza didn't look this bad." I mean, yes, Aguayo has been disappointing -- but three misses on ten kicks isn't out of the question for an NFL kicker, and he hasn't been bad on kickoffs. So far, he basically looks league-average or perhaps a little worse. That's not why the Bucs drafted him at all, and it's certainly disappointing, but it's not a disaster either.
This is, however, why drafting a kicker that high was a bad idea. If Aguayo turned out to be everything the Bucs thought he'd be, he might have been worth the investment. But there's always a significant risk that he doesn't -- and, as we pointed out repeatedly before the draft, highly drafted kickers often fail to live up to their draft status. In fact, the only kicker over the past twenty years to live up to his earlier-than-fifth-round draft status was Stephen Gostkowski. So far, Aguayo doesn't look like that guy.
Let's hope that it's just a mental thing, and that that mental thing is fixable, rather than a career-ending catastrophe. Some nerves he has to get over, pressure he can't quite handle (yet), but will in the future. Let's hope, because otherwise this may be the most obivous failed second-round pick in the history of the Bucs franchise, and that's quite an achievement.