The Tampa Bay Buccaneers used a convoy of kickers to convert just 72.5 percent of their field goal attempts in 2015 (30th in the NFL). General manager Jason Licht thought he was fixing the situation by drafting Florida State's Robert Aguayo — the most accurate kicker in college football history — in the second round of the 2016 NFL Draft.
He was actually making it worse.
Aguayo — the fourth (and maybe the last) kicker drafted in the first two rounds the last 25 years — attempted all 31 of the Bucs' field goals and hit just 71 percent of them. They ranked dead last in kicking.
The team released Aguayo last weekend. And with HBO's Hard Knocks in the building, the entire football world saw the emotional conversation.
“I’m owning up to it,” Bucs' general manager Jason Licht told Sports Illustrated's Peter King. “I’m owning up to it by releasing him. It was a bold move and it didn’t work out. I don’t know what else to say. I know I have the support of my coach and my ownership."
While a sad scene, the reality is Aguayo — who immediately signed with the Bears — did not perform like a second-round pick and deserved to be cut. Clearly, the Bucs believed they botched the pick and should've taken someone else. We'll never know which player they were considering instead at No. 59, but we do know they picked a kicker over some big-time playmakers.
Here are the five players drafted after Robert Aguayo last year who had the best rookie seasons.
5. Rob Kelley – RB, Washington Redskins
Rob Kelley wasn't drafted, so he wasn't technically selected after Aguayo. No one cares.
Kelley — who was hardly a college star, rushing for a total of 1,270 yards in four seasons at Tulane — ranked 25th in the league with 704 yards and was one only three players with at least 160 carries who did not lose a fumble.
4. Yannick Ngakoue – DE, Jacksonville Jaguars
Drafted: Round 3, No. 69 overall
Yannick Ngakoue left Maryland early after setting a school record with 13.5 sacks in 2015 and was a third-round pick of the Jaguars.
He recorded his first NFL sack in Week 2 and finished the season with eight, which ranked 22nd in the league and second among rookies. It was also a Jaguars' rookie record.
3. Tyreek Hill
Drafted: Round 5, No. 165 overall
Had Tyreek Hill not acted like a violent idiot and choked his pregnant girlfriend, he may have been selected ahead of Roberto Aguayo. Instead, the troubled but unfathomably talented receiver from West Alabama (previously Oklahoma State) fell to the Chiefs in the fifth round.
Hill averaged 27.4 yards on kick returns and a league-best 15.2 yards on punt returns. His three return touchdowns were most in the league, and he added 593 yards and six touchdowns as a receiver.
2. Jordan Howard
Drafted: Round 5, No. 150
Not expected to see significant snaps behind Jeremy Langford and Ka'Deem Carey, Howard had 12 total carries in their first three games before exploding in their final 13. His 1,313 rushing yards ranked second to only Ezekiel Elliott and his 5.2 yards-per-attempt average was first among players with at least 250 carries.
1. Dak Prescott
Drafted: Round 4, No. 135 overall
Though the Bucs didn't need a quarterback, this one still stings, as it does for most of the league who passed on Dak Prescott, who produced the best season from a rookie quarterback in NFL history.
He was remarkably efficient in leading the Cowboys to 13 wins and the NFC East title, completing 67.8 percent of his passes for 3,667 yards, 23 touchdowns and just four interceptions.