Aldrick Rosas

Giants K Aldrick Rosas Signs Second-Round RFA Tender

Although it does not appear teams are close to starting offseason workouts, the Giants will have their kicker in the fold when they do reconvene.

Aldrick Rosas signed his second-round RFA tender on Wednesday, Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets. The former Pro Bowler will be attached to a $3.26MM salary.

It would make sense for the Giants to explore a Rosas extension. He’s one of only four Pro Bowl kickers in franchise history, following Josh Brown (2015), John Carney (2008) and Ali Haji-Sheikh (1983). Should Rosas not have an extension in place by next March, he will be set for unrestricted free agency.

The Giants’ kicker since his 2017 arrival, Rosas has played in 48 straight games with the team. He made 32 of 33 field goal tries in 2018 — including 6-for-6 from 40-49 yards and 4 of 5 from beyond 50. However, the former Titans UDFA missed seven field goals as a rookie in 2017 and missed nine kicks (five field goals, four PATs) last season.

The Giants held a late-season kicker workout last year, after Rosas missed two field goals in a five-point loss to the Bears. But the team did not replace him and is moving forward with its 25-year-old specialist.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Giants Tender K Aldrick Rosas

The Giants will give their kicker a raise. They are placing a second-round RFA tender on Aldrick Rosas, Ryan Dunleavy of the New York Post tweets.

This will bump Rosas’ 2020 salary to $3.3MM. He made $645K in 2019. Rosas joined the Giants as a UDFA out of Southern Oregon and has been Big Blue’s kicker in each of the team’s past 48 games.

Rosas received Pro Bowl recognition in 2018, making 32 of 33 field goals that season. He was less effective in 2019, making just 12 of 17 tries and missing four extra points. But the Giants will show faith in their 25-year-old specialist and can check this mid-level business item off their extensive offseason to-do list.

RFA/ERFA Tender Decisions: 3/6/19

Here are today’s restricted free agent and exclusive-rights free agent tender decisions:

RFAs

Tendered at original-round level:

ERFAs

Tendered:

Non-tendered:

Giants Release K Mike Nugent

The Giants’ kicker competition has seemingly come to an end. According to Mike Garafolo of NFL.com (via Twitter), the team is releasing veteran Mike Nugent. That means 2016 undrafted rookie Aldrick Rosas has earned the starting gig.

Mike Nugent (Vertical)Following seven seasons with the Bengals, Nugent signed with the Giants this offseason to provide competition for Rosas. While the veteran has never been confused for an All-Pro kicker, he has been relatively consistent during his career, connecting on 80.8-percent of his field goal attempts and 96.9-percent of his extra points. However, the 35-year-old seemingly took a step back in 2016, connecting on only 79.3-percent of field goals and a career-low 79.3-percent of his extra point attempts.

After joining the Titans as an undrafted free agent in 2016, Rosas signed a reserve/future contract with the Giants back in January. The 22-year-old has proven to be more than capable during the preseason, connecting on all eight of his field goal attempts and each of his six extra point attempts.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Giants Sign K Mike Nugent

The Giants signed veteran kicker Mike Nugent, according to a team announcement. Nugent will duke it out with Aldrick Rosas for the team’s kicking job. Mike Nugent (Vertical)

The Giants have been talking up Rosas all offseason, so it’s a bit of a surprise to see them sign a kicker just days into training camp. Rosas has no regular season experience whereas Nugent is a 13-year vet who has appeared in 158 regular season and postseason games. The 35-year-old has the rare distinction of being a kicker who was chosen with a second round pick. Although he was not able to justify his placement in the draft, Nugent has been a reliable leg, by and large.

Nugent, the owner of 22 school records at Ohio State, will now square off with a second-year player for the right to serve as the Giants’ kicker.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

East Notes: Revis, Jets, Giants

The Cowboys have a fair amount of cap space, but they are reportedly uninterested in adding Darrelle Revis to their defensive backfield. That doesn’t mean, however, that certain Dallas players don’t want to see Revis in silver-and-blue in the fall. Star wideout Dez Bryant tweeted Revis yesterday afternoon, saying, “Dallas?…I promise you are going to love what we got going on around here..your attitude fits our culture…waiting…..” While the Cowboys are doubtlessly pleased to see that Bryant is happy in Dallas, Charean Williams of Pro Football Talk confirms the earlier report that the team is unlikely to sign Revis. The Cowboys signed Nolan Carroll and drafted three corners this offseason, and they have chosen to build through the draft in recent years rather than sign expensive free agents.

Now for more from the league’s east divisions:

  • Rich Cimini of ESPN.com has a number of Jets-related notes this morning, and he observes that, outside of this year’s No. 6 overall selection, Jamal Adams, the player who has really stood out in the team’s OTAs is fellow rookie safety Marcus Maye. Maye, a second-round choice, impressed the organization with his ability to digest the defense and limit his mental mistakes on the practice field, leading New York to believe it could have an excellent safety tandem on its hands.
  • Cimini also believes that the Jets are making a mistake by parting ways with Eric Decker. He says young quarterbacks like Christian Hackenberg and Bryce Petty need a reliable wide receiver to help their development, and without Decker, New York really does not have such a player. Cimini also says that, if Jeremy Maclin signs somewhere other than Baltimore, the Jets’ leverage in Decker trade talks with the Ravens would of course increase, though he does not expect the Jets to get anything higher than a late-round draft choice for Decker regardless of what happens with Maclin.
  • Cimini also notes that there is “nothing cooking” on the Sheldon Richardson trade front, and that the Jets are prepared to go into the season with him and are hoping he can boost his value in advance of the trade deadline.
  • We have heard a lot about a potential long-term deal for Giants receiver Odell Beckham lately, but James Kratch of NJ.com, like many other writers, believes the most likely outcome is that OBJ plays out the 2017 season on his modest $1.8MM salary and that the two sides begin discussing a multi-year extension after the season.
  • In the same piece, Kratch says the Giants really like second-year kicker Aldrick Rosas, who has been exceedingly impressive in offseason practices, and that it is unlikely Big Blue adds a veteran kicker at this point.
  • Eagles rookie Nate Gerry‘s conversion to linebacker is going well, as Dave Zangaro of CSNPhilly.com writes. The Nebraska product has put on about 16 pounds over the past month in his effort to go from hard-hitting collegiate safety to professional linebacker, and he will have the opportunity to get significant playing time in an unsettled linebacker unit in Philadelphia.

East Rumors: Brady, Patriots, Bills, Taylor

Recently, Tom Brady was asked if he is annoyed that Bill Belichick hasn’t traded Jimmy Garoppolo and his non-answer might raise some eyebrows.

When you’re a member of a team sport, the best guy plays,” the Patriots quarterback told Ian O’Connor of ESPN.com. “So I always want to make sure I’m the best guy, and I give our team a great chance to win. But if you’re ever not [the best guy], part of being a great teammate is letting the other guy do that, as well. Competition is what has always driven me. I’ve never been one that was hand selected, to be this particular player. … In high school, college, professionally, I think the greater the competition, the more that it really allows me to dig deep and bring the best out of me.”

Of course, this is a far cry from Brady saying that he’s peeved at the team for not trading the backup QB, but he didn’t shoot the notion down when given the opportunity either. The Patriots were at least mulling a Garoppolo trade at some point this offseason, but it seems that they set an extremely high asking price because they ultimately did not want to part with him.

Here’s more from the AFC and NFC East:

  • In an interview on Monday, Bills GM Brandon Beane said Tyrod Taylor will probably be the team’s starting QB, but he cautioned that he’s “not in business of handing out jobs on May the 15th,” (Twitter link via ESPN.com’s Mike Rodak).
  • Giants kicker Aldrick Rosas cleared a giant hurdle this weekend when the team declined to sign veteran Travis Coons after a weekend tryout. “I try not to focus on the competition,” Rosas told James Kratch of NJ.com. “I just try to focus on how I can improve myself and be the best specialist I can be.” For now, Rosas stands as the only kicker on the team’s roster.
  • The Jets auditioned running back Stevan Ridley last week.

NFC East: Giants, Rosas, Cowboys, Eagles

The fact that Aldrick Rosas is the only kicker on the Giants roster is an indication that the organization is willing to roll with the 22-year-old next season. Despite the former undrafted free agent having no NFL experience, special teams coordinator Tom Quinn is confident that his kicker will be prepared.

“We will try and simulate (games for) him and then you have the preseason to go with that,” Quinn told Ralph Vacchiano SNY.tv. “We’ve had a couple of nice young kickers in here with (Chris) Boswell (in 2015) and Brandon McManus (in 2014). They’ve gone on to do well. It’s not always perfect with the young guys. Sometimes there’s going to be a little bit of hiccups. We’ll see where we go with that.”

As Vacchiano points out, the Giants could easily sign a veteran free agent kicker to compete with Rosas. The team also has Travis Coons participating at the rookie minicamp this weekend. Quinn noted that with “no more two-a-days and limited practice,” the team would struggle to find “kicks” for multiple players.

Let’s take a look at some other notes from around the NFC East…

  • The Giants gave undrafted offensive lineman Chad Wheeler a $20,000 signing bonus, the highest among the team’s undrafted rookies. The Giants also have a need for an offensive tackle, which is why Dan Duggan of NJ.com believes Wheeler has a shot of making the team. The writer also lists defensive tackle Jarron Jones, offensive lineman Jessamen Dunker, wideout Travis Rudolph, linebacker Calvin Munson, cornerback Nigel Tribune, fullback Shane Smith, and safety Jadar Johnson among undrafted rooks who might have a shot at making the final roster.
  • Cowboys tight end Rico Gathers earned an incredible $499,990 to play on the team’s practice squad last season. With Jason Witten‘s career winding down, the former sixth-round pick will have an opportunity to play a significant role in the team’s offense this season. “It’s night and day for [Gathers] in a good way from last year,” offensive coordinator Scott Linehan told Matthew Martinez of the Star-Telegram. “When you know what you’re doing and you’ve got your body in football shape, it’s amazing what you can do, and that’s the biggest difference from where he was a year ago until now.”
  • We learned yesterday that the Eagles agreed to pay second-round cornerback Sidney Jones his full 2017 base salary even if he spends the season on the NFI list.

NFL Reserve/Futures Contracts: 1/19/17

Here are the latest reserve/futures contract signings from around the NFL. These deals will go into effect on the first day of the 2017 league year, with players joining their respective clubs’ offseason 90-man rosters:

New England Patriots

New York Giants

  • K Aldrick Rosas

San Diego Chargers

  • WR Da’Ron Brown
  • WR Jamaal Jones

San Francisco 49ers

Seattle Seahawks

Workout Notes: Pack, Vikes, Chiefs, Giants

In addition to the previously reported Joique Bell, the running back-needy Packers worked out fellow rushers James Wilder Jr. and Brandon Wegher on Tuesday, according to Rob Demovsky of ESPN.com. Defensive end Arthur Miley and defensive back Brandon Dixon also tried out.

More of the latest workouts (courtesy of Howard Balzer, unless otherwise noted):