It’s not officially Bears training camp unless there’s some sort of kicker drama.
And while it appeared as if that would be off our radar after the team released Ramiz Ahmed, it turns out that isn’t the case:
— Brad Biggs (@BradBiggs) August 23, 2020
Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune reports the Bears are bringing bring back old friend Cairo Santos. Once the move becomes officially official after Santos completes COVID-19 testing protocols, it will mark the beginning of his second stint with the Bears.
Santos has familiarity with Head Coach Matt Nagy, who was a Chiefs assistant during the kicker’s time in Kansas City. While with the Chiefs, Santos made 84.8 percent of his kicks. His best season came in 2016, a year in which he made nearly 89 percent of his attempts, including a pair from 50+ yards. He also has familiarity with Chicago’s front office, which signed him after pushing Connor Barth out the door during the 2017 season.
During his brief go with the Bears in 2017, Santos played two games, made 1 of 2 field goal attempts, and both extra points. However, his time with the Bears ended with a trip to injured reserve because of a groin injury.
Santos, 28, arrives for another run with the Bears after Piñeiro started to deal with a groin injury of his own. Go figure. Piñeiro made 82.1 percent of his field goals last season, but missed some crucial kicks (including a potential game-winner against the Chargers) in the middle of the year. So perhaps Santos isn’t just filling in for Piñeiro. There is a distinct possibility that Santos could ultimately compete for the gig. Considering the uncertainty at the position that seemingly looms every year, we should keep tabs on this.