Aguayo, turning year around, named Player of Week


In a week that saw NFL kickers miss a historic 12 extra points, the most maligned kicker of the year had a perfect week.

Buccaneers kicker Roberto Aguayo was named NFC Special Teams Player of the Week. The second-round pick went 4-of-4 on field goals, including 41-yard and 36-yard attempts. He also nailed his only PAT in the 19-17 road upset over the Kansas City Chiefs.

Normally we wouldn't separately point out a Player of the Week, especially not a random special teams player. However, after the struggles Aguayo went through to open the season, it's noteworthy that he's turned it around.

Since he missed his first kick as a pro, back in August (in the preseason), the world has breathlessly mocked the Florida State product with every botched try. Aguayo began the regular season missing four of his first eight attempts and a flubbed extra point.

Then he nailed the game-winning field goal against the Carolina Panthers in Week 5.

Since that kick, Aguayo has made nine of 10 field goal attempts (12-of-13 on PATs) including his last seven field goal attempts.

As colleague Chris Wesseling previously pointed out, the nature of the kicking profession demands mental toughness few are capable of handling. Additional pressure was added to Aguayo's job after the Bucs traded up to draft him in the second round.

Kickers struggling out of the gate is nothing new. Sebastian Janikowski, drafted in the first round, missed 10 of 32 attempts his rookie year.

After a shaky start to his career, Aguayo seems to have turned a corner.