This Robbie Gould saga is the gift that keeps on giving, and it will be until the San Francisco 49ers come to a decision of what to do with the 36-year old kicker. Chicago Bears fans were hoping for a reunion with the player that kicked at Soldier Field for eleven years, but unless San Francisco agrees to a trade, that isn’t going to happen.
Gould may still have his options open as to where he’ll be kicking in 2019, but it’s the ‘Niners that hold all the cards as they placed the franchise tag on him back in February. Monday (July 15) is the deadline to work out a long term deal between the two sides, and if that deadline passes the 49ers still hold his rights.
The reality is that Gould’s options are limited. He could wait and report to San Francisco for their week 1 game and then start earning his $5 million franchised contract, or he could make a prorated chunk of the deal by waiting all the way to week 10. His final option is sitting out the entire 2019 season, but that doesn’t benefit anyone.
It’s no secret that Gould has maintained his Chicago residency for him and his family after Bears’ general manager Ryan Pace released him before the 2016 season, and Gould has been very adamant about keeping his family local since that time.
And even though he’s been alluding to playing for the Bears with several social media posts, he finally clarified his situation about specifically playing in Chicago.
“I never said I want to go back there,” Gould said via the Mercury News. “I just said I want to be closer to my family. That doesn’t necessarily mean (the Bears).”
That could mean any Midwestern city close enough for frequent commutes could be in play. Even the city to the north, which he specifically identified in his interview.
“My favorite place is Green Bay,” Gould said. “There’s something to the history of going there, and walking through the single-file tunnel. I’ve played really well there. It’s a comfort thing.”
The Packers kicking situation is currently being handled by 34-year old Mason Crosby, who has a 2019 cap hit of $4,850,000, with a dead cap hit of $1,250,000 if released, but I can’t see them letting their long time kicker go.
I have a feeling him being vague about his desire to play in Chicago is just him being smart about not wanting to show his cards to the 49ers, but him wanting to get away from California is very real.
Since he’s technically under contract, the Bears can’t have any discussions with Gould or his people, but I have a feeling Pace would be interested in swinging a trade if the price is right.
Are you guys still holding out hope that Gould comes back to Chicago?