The Giants were so bad in 2017 that they did not make a change at kicker even though Aldrick Rosas was wildly inconsistent as a rookie, connecting on only 18 of his 25 field-goal attempts. If the Giants had been in playoff contention, they likely would have jettisoned Rosas and signed a more experienced kicker.
And so, Rosas’ goal heading into this season was to make the team, with a new general manager and new coaching staff evaluating him. On Tuesday, Rosas learned he was voted into the Pro Bowl on the strength of hitting 28 of his 29 field-goal attempts. He admitted Wednesday he did not see this coming.
“Given last year, just to be even in the conversation this year was real special to me,’’ Rosas said. “All the credit to the snapper [Zak DeOssie] and the holder [Riley Dixon], these guys come in and work their tail off for me and we have a lot of fun doing it.’’
Rosas called the Pro Bowl selection “real special’’ and added he did not concentrate on it as the season progressed and his field-goal accuracy soared.
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“I’ve been trying to keep it all out,’’ Rosas said. “Maybe towards the end of the season kinda, maybe looking at some stuff. I kinda wanted to wait and put my head down and grind every day and when we get to the season reflect back on every game and every moment and see where I was.’’
Rosas, 23, is from the farm town of Orland, Calif., and kicked at Southern Oregon, an NAIA school. It is fair to say the Giants hit on a gamble with Rosas, who is quiet and self-effacing, prefers to keep things simple around him and, at 6-foot-3 and 233 pounds, is the size of some of the linebackers on the team.
“I’ve been pleased with what he’s done this year,’’ coach Pat Shurmur said. “You hate to say you have favorite players, but he’s one of my favorites. You’ve heard me talk about how he’s not just a kicker, he’s a football player. He’s a big guy, he’s got a presence, and he’s competitive. So I appreciate all the good in Aldrick and the fact that he was recognized is great.’’