Robbie Gould has finally cleared the air regarding his reported trade request.
“I never said I want to go back there,” Gould told the San Jose Mercury News in reference to the connect-the-dots speculation he would return to the Chicago Bears. “I just said I want to be closer to my family. That doesn’t necessarily mean (the Bears).”
Gould teased Bears fans to pieces on several occasions this offseason, so reading those words today was a bit jarring. And if that stings you, Bears fans, then his answer to the question of his favorite place to kick might burn a little.
“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.”
First of all, gross. Second of all, don’t you dare get any smart ideas you north-of-the-border Cheesedoodles. I’m no geography major, but I’ve made enough trips to know Green Bay is closer to Chicago than San Francisco. Now, back to the matter at hand — Gould, his holdout, and the latest in the tug-of-war between him and the San Francisco 49ers front office.
Teams have until 3 p.m. CT on July 15 to sign a player who has been given the Franchise tag a multi-year deal. If that deadline comes and goes without a long-term contract, the team and player can agree only on a one-year pact. One player who could fall under this particular designation is 49ers kicker Robbie Gould, whose commitment to holding out remains as strong as ever.
“I’m not going to commit to making any decision right now,” Gould told the San Jose Mercury News. “I don’t really have a plan right now. Obvious there is a deadline and I don’t have to make any decisions anytime soon. … The deadline to sign a long-term contract is Monday, and the rest of that (potential holdout) is up to me.”
In case you’ve been off the grid, the contract conflict between Gould and the 49ers has been raging on for months. Since Gould was given the Franchise tag back in February, the ace kicker has refused to sign the tag, didn’t show up for OTAs, reportedly demanded a trade close to his family in Chicago, skipped out on mandatory team workouts, and has sounded like someone who really wants to come back home to Chicago. But the longer this lingers, the easier it is to wonder how plausible a return to the Bears would even be.
The Bears open up training camp to the public in 15 days, but the team still doesn’t have a reliable kicker who could put the concerns of fans who still have visions of the double-doink dancing in their heads.In a dream world, Gould is the white knight who rides in on his trusty horse to save the day. But the reality is that there are a few midwestern teams who could accommodate Gould’s request to be closer to home, including some rivals we would hate to see him suit up for this coming season.
Stay tuned, Bears fans. Gould and the 49ers will hit a crossroads at some point and a decision will need to be made.