The New Orleans Saints have a long history of finding valuable undrafted free agents, and they are hoping 2014 is no different. Today we focus on one of these prospects, kicker Sergio Castillo from West Texas A&M.
Over his five years on campus, Castillo established himself as one of the most consistent kickers in college football. The La Joya, Texas native finished his career with the Division II record for most career points, netting 437 by the time he graduated.
As a kicker, it’s tough to get a true scouting report on Castillo. He was accurate over his time with West Texas A&M, connecting on 78% of his field goals over his career and 80% in his senior season. He netted a career-long field goal of 56 yards.
Castillo capped his illustrious career by winning the Fred Mitchell Award, given to the nation’s top place-kicker in FCS, Division II, Division III, NAIA and NJCAA for excellence in the community and on the field.
Coaches credit Castillo with a great work ethic, both on and off the field. Not only is the kicker constantly working on his game, but he excelled as a student as well. Castillo has already begun graduate school, in case his NFL dreams fall short.
Various reports suggest that Castillo had offers from several other NFL teams before landing with the Saints. Yahoo! reported that Castillo had at least three private workouts with NFL teams, while also noting that the player, “has good height, distance and accuracy on his kicks.”
Bluntly, Castillo is a long shot to make the Saints. He has been brought in to compete for the position with Shayne Graham and Derek Dimke, but Graham has to be considered the favorite thanks to his long track record in the NFL.
Ultimately, it all will come down to what happens in OTAs and training camp. I’d pencil Graham in to start the season as the Saints kicker. But, with his accuracy, Castillo has a chance to make some noise.