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Aguayo at Combine: 'NFL is much easier than high school'

Rookie kickers looking shaky in the preseason wouldn't generally rate higher than a footnote on an NFL team's list of concerns. But when a second-round draft pick was invested in that player -- in this case, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' Roberto Aguayo -- the level of alarm rises.

It's risen enough for Aguayo to seek out advice just two preseason games, two missed field goals and one missed extra point into his career. That doesn't sound at all like the Aguayo, who had this to say at the NFL Scouting Combine in February:

"To me field goals, it's easier. The hashes are closer. Growing up I always thought, wow, NFL is much easier than high school, let alone college," Aguayo said.

Aguayo has made 3 of 5 field goal attempts through two Bucs preseason games, and after going through his entire college career without a PAT miss, he's already missed an NFL point-after try.

At least the former Florida State standout and 2013 Lou Groza Award winner can take solace in this: Recent examples of kickers drafted highly have made it look fairly easy, even if Aguayo hasn't yet. Aguayo is the fifth kicker to be drafted in the fourth round or higher since 2003. Of the other four, three (Stephen Gostkowski, Mike Nugent, Nate Kaeding) have enjoyed NFL careers of nine years or more, and two are still active (Gostkowski, Nugent).

A look at the rookie seasons of the last 10 specialists drafted in the fourth round or higher:

Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter *@ChaseGoodbread*.

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