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Mailbag: Garibay Flying Under The Radar?


I never heard anything in the draft process about Jonathan Garibay. After doing some research, apparently he is pretty good. How was he not in the conversation as a top kicker drafted this year? Why is that? I assume kickers of this ilk would have more press. — SHAUN RODVOLD / NICHOLASVILLE, KY

David: I think there are two reasons. Firstly, Cade York and Cameron Dicker were multi-year stars in college, and they ate up all the press in this draft cycle. Typically, we only see one or two kickers get drafted in a given year, and those were the two that everyone focused on. On top of that is the body of work. York attempted 66 career kicks over three years at LSU, while Dicker was a four-year kicker with 79 career attempts. Garibay only attempted 27 kicks during two seasons at Texas Tech, so I'm just not sure he had as much time to pop onto people's radars. But I do agree with you, he does seem to have some talent.

Rob: I think it's worth noting that our colleague Dane Brugler, author of the annual "Beast" draft guide for The Athletic, ranked Garibay as a priority free agent and the fourth-best kicker right behind York, Oklahoma's Gabe Brkic and Dicker. You're right, he didn't get the same national attention as the other three. (He doesn't have a catchy nickname, so maybe that worked against him.) But Garibay was accurate and showed he could make long (and clutch) kicks. His 62-yarder against Iowa State was the longest winning kick by an FBS player in the final minute of a game last season, according to his school bio.

In your too early to tell opinion, how many of these draft picks make the game day roster? — CHRIS PERKINS / BURLINGTON, NJ

David: We'll see how good they wind up being, but my expectation is that the first four picks will be regulars on the game day roster. Tyler Smith, Sam Williams and Jalen Tolbert all have a chance to start or at least contribute heavily. I would hope Jake Ferguson can win the backup tight end job. So I'd hope those four will be in uniform regularly. The rest, I think it'll be wait-and-see.

Rob: All nine picks have a legitimate chance to make the 53, which isn't always the case. As far as the game-day 48, I'll say Smith, Williams, Tolbert, Ferguson, Bland and Ridgeway in Week 1. (Harper has a chance too, if he can make an impact on special teams.) Please, please don't hold me to that.

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