The terms of the contract that lured former Cowboys and Jets kicker Nick Folk to Tampa have been revealed and they show that the Buccaneers did in fact give Folk a guarantee in his new deal.
They just didn’t guarantee him a job.
Folk’s contract is for one year and is worth $1.75 million, according to ESPN’s Adam Caplan, and the guarantee came in the form of a $750,000 bonus the 32-year-old was paid at the time he signed the deal.
As for a guarantee of work, there is none.
“It’s an open competition (between me and incumbent Roberto Aguayo) just like every other position on their roster,’’ Folk told hosts Pat Donovan and Aaron Jacobson on 620 WDAE in Tampa Tuesday.
Perhaps, but the numbers we see here suggest Aguayo still has the inside track. After all, do you really think the Bucs will let $750,000 stand in the way of retaining a player drafted 59th overall?
Now granted, Aguayo will have to prove he’s the better kicker. But you get the feeling even Folk understands he’s more of a fallback option and that his guarantee is a payoff for helping to get Aguayo back on track.
“Hopefully (I can) get (Aguayo) going a little bit in the NFL world,” said Folk, who added that he benefitted as a rookie from having former Buccaneer kicker Martin Gramatica around in Dallas.
“I kind of picked things off of him just from sitting and watching,’’ Folk said of Gramatica. “Hopefully, I can show (Aguayo) a few things, (though) not too many, because I have a family to feed.”
Folk makes a good point here about having someone to watch as a rookie. Outside of Gramatica, who came around to visit every once in a while last year, Aguayo didn’t have that.
He was more or less on his own and when his struggles began he had to seek help outside of the organization, eventually seeking out a sports psychologist and former NFL kicker Ryan Longwell for assistance.
None of that worked, but maybe having Folk around will. Sure, Folk wants to win this job, but he knows the Bucs would probably like to see Aguayo win it and get his career back in order.
And if doing that costs the Bucs $750,000, then they’ll probably consider it money well spent.