Rams sign K Santos while waiting for Greg Zuerlein’s return
THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. (AP) — Cairo Santos knows he probably won’t be with the Los Angeles Rams for a long time, so he wants to make sure it’s a good time.
The Rams signed the Brazilian kicker this week instead of rushing All-Pro Greg Zuerlein back from injury. Santos practiced with his new teammates Wednesday as the Rams (4-0) prepare to play at Seattle on Sunday.
“I’m really excited to play for one of the best teams in the NFL right now,” Santos said. “It’s a good opportunity for me, and I’m rooting for Greg to be out there again. I’ve been in his situation.”
Zuerlein isn’t quite ready to return from a groin injury that has kept him out for the past three games, but the Rams weren’t happy with Sam Ficken after he missed two of his three field goal attempts over the past two games, including a 28-yarder late in the Rams’ win over Minnesota last Thursday. Ficken was cut Tuesday.
Santos made 89 of his 105 field goal attempts as the Kansas City Chiefs’ kicker from 2014 until early last season, when he was released after injuring his groin. Santos kicked for the Bears late last season until he injured his groin again, and he competed for the Jets’ job this year in training camp.
“I think it’s always good to put tape out there,” Santos said. “Especially for me, the question is not if I’m still good enough to play, but if I’m healthy. So I want to prove that to other teams out there. Coming out and playing for a great offense, hopefully I’ll get a bunch of kicks and show the other 31 teams that I’m back and I belong in this league.”
Santos said he had “the same injury” that has sidelined Zuerlein, and he plans to give recovery advice to his new teammate.
He realizes he could be cut by the Rams as soon as next week if Zuerlein is feeling good, but he plans to make the most out of his opportunity.
“I’ve been telling (Zuerlein) that it’s his gig,” Santos said. “I just want to come in and do my part, my job, and move on.”