Kickers are often the unsung hero of their team and don’t get the love and attention they deserve, but Kirby Smart would be the first to tell you what Rodrigo Blankenship means to this team.
“He’s been incredible, to be honest with you,” Smart said. “I think our special teams’ staff does a tremendous job of making sure he’s fresh. He does a tremendous job of taking care of his body. It’s shown in the last two games with the power and drive consistently. Most guys wear out as the game goes on, maybe have to kick another kicker, or maybe don’t kick him at all, he just continues to pound the ball and does a great job doing it. He’s a leader on our team. And he’s awesome to work with. I mean, he’s become a weapon. And we have to use him as such.”
This season Rodrigo is already perfect on PATs 11/11, fields goal attempts 3/3, and 15/15 on touchbacks, giving up zero return yards.
Last week the talk about Deebo Samuel being a great kickoff return man was inconsequential. Blankenship kept him from even touching the football once.
The importance of a great kicker cannot be understated and as long as Blankenship stays consistent he will probably be a finalist for the Lou Groza award.
He was just named SEC special teams player of the week for his performance against South Carolina.
“It is a great honor to be recognized this week and I just hope that I can continue to perform at a high level for my team,” Blankenship said.