“I got two T-shirts and pair of shorts. That’s all,” the Redskins’ 23-year-old kicker said Thursday, following his first practice with the team. “I gotta go to the mall today and get some socks.”
The team arranged for a rental car and temporary housing, and Rose is hopeful he’ll be around for at least a few more weeks. Of course, he’ll have to show that he can kick in an NFL game first.
This is the breakthrough opportunity Rose has been waiting for since he finished school at the University of Texas in 2016. The Falcons signed him as an undrafted free agent last year and he spent training camp this year with the 49ers, but he’s yet to kick in a regular-season game.
“It’s a dream come true,” he said. “Just being able to play at this level, getting a real opportunity, a real shot, just excited all around.”
Since San Francisco released him in the summer, Rose has been back in Austin, working out, lifting weights and kicking at the Longhorns’ practice facility. Tuesday marked his first NFL tryout of the year.
“[You] get calls from here and there. You’re supposed to be one place, they don’t ever call back,” he said. “This is the first one. I capitalized on my opportunity and I won the job.”
After a hip injury landed Dustin Hopkins on injured reserve, the Redskins brought in four kickers on Tuesday. Rose was the best, Washington Coach Jay Gruden said.
“He had the most pop on his kicks, kickoffs and field goals,” he said. “He didn’t miss any, so we thought we’d give him an opportunity.”
Hopkins will miss at least eight weeks, which means Rose has a chance on Monday night against the Eagles to show that the Redskins should keep him around.
At Texas, Rose was 27-of-38 kicking field goals and 71-of-74 on extra-points. In the preseason with the 49ers, he was 3-of-4 on field goal attempts, which included a 55-yarder, and 4-of-5 on extra points.
He downplayed the pressure that might accompany his NFL debut — a high-stakes game on Monday night against a division rival.
“I think it all comes down to preparation,” he said. “Just how strong you can be mentally. If you can approach every kick as it is in practice, I think you’ll be all right.”
Just a week removed from unemployment, he’ll be on national television on Monday with millions watching, quite a bit different than his minor brushes with Internet notoriety. Rose’s small claim to fame as a college kicker came from a pair of YouTube videos — kicking a field goal while doing a back-flip and crushing an 80-yard field goal on the practice field. He’s not anticipating Gruden sending him on the field for any 80-yard attempts in Philadelphia.
“At the time when I did that, it was more so who can kick the ball the farthest. As time’s gone on, I’ve realized that really doesn’t matter,” Rose said. “I would say no, that’s not who I am these days . . . . I wanted to show off I could do that and I did. But I’m trying to be more of a kicker that’s good inside of 50 yards.”