Bears Look For Consistency In Adding Kicker Cody Parkey

The Bears have lacked a reliable kicking game since releasing Robbie Gould.

Chris Emma
March 20, 2018 - 2:46 pm
New Bears kicker Cody Parkey, then with the Dolphins.

Kirby Lee/USA Today Sports

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By Chris Emma--

(670 The Score) Time has proved the Bears made a mistake in releasing kicker Robbie Gould in September 2016, as they've failed for two straight seasons to capably replace their all-time leading scorer.

Cody Parkey hopes to change that for the Bears after joining Chicago by signing a four-year, $15-million deal last week. After two seasons of inconsistencies and re-evaluations at kicker, the Bears reinvested in the position with the 26-year-old Parkey.

"A proven kicker," Bears general manager Ryan Pace said.

Bears kickers have gone 34-of-45 on field goals (75.6 percent) in the two seasons since the team parted ways with Gould. In that time, the Bears used Connor Barth, Cairo Santos, Mike Nugent and even experimented with Roberto Aguayo. Chicago has been a team that has faltered in close games, fruitlessly wishing for reliability in the kicking game.

Parkey has hit 76 of his 88 field goal attempts in his career, an 86.4 percent success rate. His career-long is 54 yards. He went 21-of-23 on field goals for the Dolphins last season after previously spending two seasons with the Eagles and one year with the Browns and new Bears special teams coordinator Chris Tabor in 2016.

"I knew I had a familiarity here," Parkey said. "He knows what I’m good at. He knows what can I improve on and stuff like that. Knowing he was here definitely added a sense of comfort for me."

Kicking in Chicago can be a difficult proposition. The elements includes both rain and snow, and the swirling wind of Soldier Field can often shift and force a kicker to adapt. Gould became a steady kicker by learning how the weather at his home stadium could change during the course of a game.

Parkey pointed to both his time in Cleveland and Philadelphia and also the work of Gould as reasons why he can succeed kicking in Chicago.

"You see a guy like Robbie Gould who had so much success here," Parkey said. "Obviously, it's possible to be a good kicker here and I hope I'm here for a long time, and I hope I can have the success that someone like that, like Robbie Gould had. He was an incredible kicker here. It shows you that it's clearly possible to be a great kicker here, and I'm up for the challenge and I'm up to go out there and do my best."

Chris Emma covers the Bears, Chicago’s sports scene and more for 670TheScore.com. Follow him on Twitter @CEmma670.