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If the Bengals draft a kicker in 2018, Eddy Pineiro is one of the top 2 options

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The Bengals might as well use one of their 11 picks on a good kicker, right?

Florida v Vanderbilt Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images

Outside of a missed field goal attempt in the Florida Gators first game of the season, Eddy Pineiro connected on a perfect 17 of 17 kicks in 2017. A lifelong soccer player, Pineiro only began playing football as a high school senior, attempting extra points and kickoffs. Following a season of soccer at ASA College in Miami Beach, Pineiro became the University of Florida’s kicker for two seasons. The lack of experience didn’t hold Pineiro back, as he connected on over 88% of his kicks in two seasons at Florida, culminating in a third team All-American selection last year.

Pineiro is expected to be the first (or maybe second) kicker drafted this year and he nailed an 81 yard kick in practice (WOW)!

Eddy Pineiro

Height: 6’0”

Weight: 173 pounds

Position: Kicker

College: Florida

Projected Round: Rounds 5-6

Eddy Pineiro

Year Player GP 0-30 FGM 0-30 FGA 0-39% 40-49 FGM 40-49 FGA 40-49% 50+ FGM 50+ FGA 50+% Lng FGM FGA FG% XP XPA XP%
Year Player GP 0-30 FGM 0-30 FGA 0-39% 40-49 FGM 40-49 FGA 40-49% 50+ FGM 50+ FGA 50+% Lng FGM FGA FG% XP XPA XP%
2016 Eddy Pineiro 13 10 12 83% 8 10 80% 3 3 100% 54 21 25 84% 32 32 100%
2017 Eddy Pineiro 11 11 11 100% 4 5 80% 2 2 100% 50 17 18 94% 24 26 92%
Average Eddy Pineiro 24 21 23 91% 12 15 80% 5 5 100% 38 43 88% 56 58 97%

Important Notes:

  • Third Team AP All-American selection in 2017
  • Second Team All-Conference selection in 2017 (Behind Auburn’s Daniel Carlson)
  • Didn’t begin playing football until his senior season of high school
  • Was more accurate on field goal attempts (94%) than extra point attempts (92%) last year

Per The Athletic’s Joe Goodberry, Marvin Lewis spoke with Pineiro at his pro day.

Another Florida prospect to watch is kicker Eddy Pinero. Marvin Lewis attended the Gators’ pro day and pulled Pinero aside for a private meeting. It could mean nothing or it could be a late-round pick to compete with veteran Randy Bullock.

Scouting Report Consensus - What to like:

  • Was the most accurate collegiate kicker last season, making 94.4% of his kicks (17 for 18)
  • Generated the highest rate of touchbacks for his career of all 2018 draft-worthy kickers, with 75% (87 of 116) of his kickoffs going for touchbacks.
  • Was a perfect 5 for 5 on kicks of 50 yards or more in his two years at Florida.
  • Very accurate, making over 88% of his career field goal attempts, and 85% of his kicks from 40 yards or more.

Scouting Report Consensus - What to not like:

  • Mechanics are less than ideal
  • Very raw as a prospect when it comes to understanding football

Analysis:

The biggest knock on Pineiro is his lack of experience and understanding of the game of football. If a team were drafting a quarterback, that might be an issue. But Pineiro is a kicker, where the big question is whether he can get the ball between the uprights. By that measure, Pineiro has been outstanding.

In only two years of competitively kicking he has been surprisingly consistent, making just about every high-pressure and low-pressure kick that has been thrown at him. And he’s consistently forced touchbacks on most of his kickoffs.

Along with Auburn’s Daniel Carlson, Pineiro is one of the two kickers certainly worth a selecting before the seventh round, when a team may take a flier on a mediocre kicking prospect. His inexperience will likely make some teams wary of pursuing him too high in the draft, but he offers a lot of potential, as a prospect who has only been kicking field goals for a couple seasons.

If the Bengals are serious about looking for a kicker of the future, and not just bringing in a warm body to compete with a nominal veteran, then a fifth or sixth round pick may be what they need to spend on Pineiro. The Bengals have three fifth round picks but no sixth rounders entering the draft.