The Chicago Bears were amongst the league’s toughest teams last season with a top defense and a young, up-and-coming offense.
Unfortunately, their season was cut short in their postseason matchup with the Philadelphia Eagles after Cody Parkey managed to hit the upright and the crossbar in one attempt. This failed field goal attempt would later be known as “The Double Doink.”
Head coach Matt Nagy has made it clear since that unfortunate day, the team needs to address their needs at the place kicker position. When your team is as strong as the Bears are their may not be any obvious holes in their game, however, it’s clear the concern Nagy has at the position does hold a lot of truth.
For this reason alone it’s apparent the Bears biggest issue lies at the place kicker position and they will need to do whatever they can prior to the new season to fix this particular issue.
The Bears have signed some new additions to the team in hopes of finding their answer at the position like Eddy Pineiro and Chris Blewitt. Considering the strength of the Bears defense and the offense’s ability to hold their own, it’s tough to see games slip through the cracks because of a seemingly attainable field goal attempt.
The elite teams hardly ever have to worry about their kicker making a field goal that really should be converted. It’ll be interesting to see who comes out on top of the Bear’s kicking competition, but this could undoubtedly be the final piece to put Chicago into Super Bowl contention.
Quarterback Mitchell Trubisky made leaps and bounds last season after a shaky rookie campaign and his versatility has made meshed well with Nagy’s fast-paced offensive schemes. On the other hand, the Bears defense played at an extremely intense level last season and led the league in numerous categories including points allowed, interceptions, and defensive touchdowns.
With all of these factors considered, the kicking is definitely a major concern after last season’s struggles. Now that Cody Parkey is no longer with the team, it’s a strong possibility Nagy has done his due diligence in finding the team’s solution on special teams. While Blewitt is listed atop the team’s depth chart, it really is anyone’s position to win at this point in time.
Pineiro and Blewitt will likely be in a head-to-head battle unless Elliott Fry can make a case for himself to win the team’s place kicker race.
Pineiro has the name heading training camp, with age on his side and a chip on his shoulder after his 2018 season ended in injury. The Bears have the University of Florida’s most accurate kicker in the school’s history, converting 38 of 43 field goals for a staggering 88.4 percent.
While these are surely attributes to be excited about, the Bears need to keep maintain a short memory as former kicker Roberto Aguayo was highly-touted coming out of Florida State and failed to live up to expectations.
The Bears franchise appears to finally be on the right track once more after years of underachieving so the kicking competition ought to be something that’ll be the talk of the team, hopefully for not all the wrong reasons.