One day after locking Cairo Santos into a long-term extension, the Chicago Bears are bringing back his holder.
Punter Pat O’Donnell, affectionately known as Megapunt in some circles, will ride again:
#Bears are bringing back P Pat O’Donnell on a one-year deal, source says. So K Cairo Santos gets done yesterday and O’Donnell today.
— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) March 12, 2021
NFL Network insider Mike Garafolo reports O’Donnell is re-signing on a one-year deal. So unlike Santos, who was given the long-term security of a multi-year deal, the Bears are retaining O’Donnell on a one-year pact.
O’Donnell, 30, has been Chicago’s punter since 2014 when he beat Tress Way in a training camp competition. For the most part, O’Donnell has gone unchallenged in the punting game. Although, I wonder if that will be the case in 2021 since he is only on a one-year contract. O’Donnell’s 45.7 yards per punt average is his best showing of his career. But the 39.5 net average is his lowest since 2017 (39.7).
With O’Donnell and Santos returning, it leaves long-snapper Patrick Scales as the only free-agent-to-be who happens to be part of the Bears’ place-kicking mechanism. The exclusivity period to talk to 2021 free agents ends on Monday.