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Chargers Provide Update on Kicker Competition

Woes at kicker proved costly for the Bolts a year ago.

To that end, the team vowed to do all in their power to fix that issue heading into 2018.

Enter Caleb Sturgis and Roberto Aguayo.

"We have some talented kickers," said Head Coach Anthony Lynn. "Both of those guys have kicked at a high level, and so we'll see when the time comes, but I try not to get too excited right now. But when the times comes when those guys compete in training camp and real games, I'm looking forward to it."

A former fifth-round pick (166th overall) by Miami in 2013, the 28-year old Sturgis has appeared in 62 career games over five seasons with the Dolphins and Philadelphia Eagles. He's converted 111-of-137 attempts (81.0-percent) with a career-long of 55, including a field goal of at least 50 yards in every season.

Meanwhile, Aguayo is a former second-round pick (59th overall) by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2016 out of Florida State. Aguayo connected on 22-of-31 field goal attempts his rookie season while going 32-for-34 on extra points. 

On Monday, Special Teams Coordinator and Assistant Head Coach George Stewart was asked to weigh in on how both kickers have fared so far, and he offered an update on the competition.

Basically, it's currently a dead heat as we enter the final two weeks of the offseason program.

"It's always even," Stewart said. "They both were high draft picks in terms of specialists.  We're just looking forward to the opportunity to get to camp and see these guys kick.  Hopefully, one of those guys will come through, and I'm quite sure one of them will.  But we're excited about both of them."

While both options are relatively young, they also are at different stages of their NFL careers.

"Caleb, when he came out, he was a fifth-round pick," continued Stewart.  "Roberto is a second-round pick.  Obviously, those guys have some quality to them in terms of where they were drafted.  Caleb is a veteran guy.  Roberto, this is his second year going back into the league.  So, we're looking forward to seeing what both those guys can do going into training camp."

In order to truly evaluate the pair of kickers before declaring a winner, it's imperative that they first build a rapport with their new teams.

The long snapper and holder often make it look easy, but a lot goes into building the trust and camaraderie needed to successfully execute an attempt.

"Right now, the basic thing we're focusing on is trying to get the timing," said Stewart.  "You have two new kickers from two different backgrounds.  You have a new snapper and a couple new holders.  Right now, we're just working on timing in terms of timing from the snap to the hold to the kick.  And, just making sure they're in the tempo of kicking the football through the uprights."

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