Giants K Ryan Santoso Generating Trade Interest

The Giants might be able to finagle a draft pick out of a kicker who has not attempted a field goal or extra point in a regular season NFL game. According to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com, teams have called the Giants to discuss a trade for Ryan Santoso, who is blocked by Graham Gano in New York but whom other clubs believe is an NFL-caliber kicker (Twitter link).

Santoso signed with the Lions as a UDFA in 2018, and he has also spent time with the Titans and the CFL’s Montreal Alouettes. He appeared in three games for Tennessee in 2019 and was deployed as a kickoff specialist during that stretch. He handled 17 kickoffs, nine of which went for touchbacks, before being waived.

Last year, he bounced on and off the Giants’ practice squad and active roster, and he signed a reserve/futures deal in January. During his first two years as a collegian at Minnesota, he served as the Golden Gophers’ primary placekicker. He switched to punter for the final two years of his college career, and while his versatility could be an asset, it appears that his primary focus at this time is on his placekicking abilities. Though he had just one XP attempt (which was successful) in New York’s preseason opener last week, he has reportedly performed well in training camp.

The Patriots’ Nick Folk is dealing with an injury, and UDFA rookie Quinn Nordin struggled mightily in the team’s second preseason game on Thursday. As such, New England might be one of the clubs inquiring on Santoso, and the Joe Judge-Pats connection could obviously help facilitate a deal. The Giants’ Meadowlands rivals, the Jets, are currently rostering just one PK, Matt Ammendola, who went undrafted in 2020 and who signed with the Panthers in May of this year before being waived and hooking on with Gang Green. The Jets, therefore, profile as another possible landing spot.

Carolina could also have interest. Joey Slye, who has operated as the team’s placekicker over the past two years, missed his third kick of the preseason in last night’s loss to Baltimore, and head coach Matt Rhule did not mince words after the game.

“You have to produce and so far, Joey has not produced at the level we need him to,” Rhule said (via Josh Alper of Pro Football Talk). “I think he would be the first guy to say that. We have to find a way to get over that hump with him.”

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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