It’s never a comfortable feeling when your boss hires your potential replacement.
Sometimes it causes anxiety. Even perhaps bitterness.
But Bucs kicker Roberto Aguayo says he feels neither of those things, and thinks the competition with recent free agent acquisition Nick Folk can make him a better player.
Behind the backdrop of over 200 area youths who were attending Jameis Winston’s Pro Camp on Saturday, Aguayo took a breather and talked about the situation with PewterReport.com.
“It is motivation, Aguayo said. ” When I was in college there would be walk-on kids come in and I didn’t know who they were or if they were good or whatever. But whoever they were, it was always a competition for me. Just seeing someone else out there trying to compete. I like it.”
“I look at it like playing golf. 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.’ So it is good motivation for both of us and it is just going to make both of us better. And the better one will come out on top.”
Aguayo’s struggles began in the preseason, missing his first extra point attempt in the NFL against the Eagles, but he finished the season 32-of-34 on point after attempts. On field goals he converted just 71 percent, last in the NFL. He did have a nice stretch after the bye week where he converted 17 of 20 field goal attempts (85 percent), before going 1-of-3 in the season finale against the Panthers.
The Buccaneers didn’t blindside Aguayo when they signed Folk, instead they gave him a heads up, which the former FSU star liked.
“They (Jason Licht and Dirk Koetter) called me and let me know,, and I told them I appreciated it,” Aguayo said. “That business was business and they were going to bring him in. I didn’t know who it was going to be. But I knew they were going to bring someone in. It was just a matter of who it was. But it doesn’t matter. I am ready to go out and compete and I know he is too. Nick is a good dude. He has been in the league for a long time.”
The former Groza Award winner reiterated how he thinks having Folk in camp will benefit him.
“I think just seeing another kicker… You know last year there wasn’t another kicker there so you don’t get to see (how they prepare and practice). Other positions have other players like quarterbacks, so you can see what he did right or didn’t do right. So you can learn little things from watching other people.”
Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for PewterReport.com since 2011. Cook has followed the Buccaneers since 1977 when he first began watching football with his Dad and is fond of the 1979 Bucs team that came within 10 points of going to a Super Bowl. His favorite Bucs game is still the 1979 divisional playoff win 24-17 over the Eagles. In his spare time Cook enjoys playing guitar, fishing, surfing and family time at the beach. In addition, Cook can be found in front of a television or in Doak Campbell any time the FSU Seminoles are playing. Cook is a native of Pinecrest in Eastern Hillsborough County and has written for numerous publications including the Tampa Tribune, In the Field and Ya'll Magazine. Cook can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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