The Patriots appear to have their Stephen Gostkowski replacement.
New England selected Marshall kicker Justin Rohrwasser in the fifth round (158th overall) of the 2020 NFL Draft.
Here are four things to know about the newest Patriots kicker.
Rohrwasser attended the University of Rhode Island.
When Rohrwasser officially joins the Patriots, it won’t be his first time playing in New England.
The Clifton Park, New York, native attended the University of Rhode Island for the first two years of his college career.
— New England Patriots (@Patriots) April 25, 2020
In his two years with the Rams, Rohrwasser went 15 for 20 on field goals (75 percent) and 39 for 41 on extra-point attempts (95 percent).
The longest kick Rohrwasser made when he was at Rhode Island was a 42-yard field goal in the team’s win over Elon in 2016. He won the CAA Football Special Teams Player of the Week for his performance in that game.
Rohrwasser had dreams of playing soccer growing up.
Like many kickers, Rohrwasser also played soccer. In fact, soccer was the sport Rohrwasser liked most growing up.
His dad told Chuck McGill of HerdZone.com that when Rohrwasser broke his arm when he was 8 or 9 years old, he would kick a soccer ball against a wall in his basement for at least an hour every day while he couldn’t play due to the injury.
Rohrwasser joined the Black Watch Premier soccer club, and when his team made a trip to play in the United States Youth Soccer East Regionals in 2009, which was played at Marshall’s football stadium, he realized he also wanted to play football too.
“I thought it was the coolest thing ever,” Rohrwasser told HerdZone.com. “I knew I wanted to do something, anything, here.”
Rohrwasser said his dad, Dave, pushed him to play football despite his soccer dreams.
“It didn’t matter if it was Father’s Day or Christmas Day, we’re out there shoveling snow off the field and my dad is holding for me,” Rohrwasser said. “Without him, I would have never done it. I’m so lucky with the family I have and the support they give me.”
Rohrwasser has six piercings plus tattoos on his arms.
Rohrwasser’s tattoos became a topic on social media after he was drafted Saturday.
The tattoos, which are on his arms, include ones that say “Liberty or death,” “Don’t tread on me,” in addition to an American flag tattoo and one for Dave Matthews Band.
Rohrwasser also has a Three Percenters tattoo. The Three Percenters are a far-right militia group that advocates gun ownership rights and resistance to the U.S. federal government’s involvement in local affairs.
“They’re all random,” Rohrwasser told HerdZone.com of his tattoos last October.
“They don’t follow through too much and I don’t either,” Rohrwasser added of his tattoos. “I don’t look pretty kicking it.”
When he was asked about the tattoo during his introductory video conference on Saturday, Rohrwasser said he got the tattoo when he was a teenager and didn’t know what it meant.
“I got that tattoo when I was a teenager. I thought it supported military support,” Rohrwasser said. “It’s evolved into something I do not want to represent.
“It will be covered,” Rohrwasser added.
Rohrwasser already has a couple of clutch moments in his football career.
Rohrwasser was a dual-threat for his high school football team. In addition to playing kicker, he was also the quarterback at Catholic Central High School in Troy, New York.
In a game during his senior season, Rohrwasser drove his team down the field to set himself up to kick the game-winning 37-yard field goal.
In his redshirt senior season at Marshall, Rohrwasser came up in the clutch again. He converted a 53-yard field goal as time expired to give Marshall a 26-23 win over Western Kentucky. It was the longest made kick of his college career.
Rohrwasser made 18 of 21 kicks in his senior season (85.7 percent) to win Conference USA’s 2019 Special Teams Player of the Year.