Kicker Robbie Gould’s 11-year tenure with the Bears came to an unceremonious end when the team released him a week before the 2016 season started. GM Ryan Pace believed that Connor Barth was better and more affordable than Gould, though Barth was cut last month for Cairo Santos. On Sunday, Gould, the Bears’ all-time points leader, got a sort of revenge as he scored every point in the 49ers’ 15-14 win over his former team.
New Niners quarterbacking hope Jimmy Garoppolo threw for a respectable 293 yards with one pick, though the offense couldn’t find the end zone. San Francisco had to settle for five field goals within 35 yards, but that was enough. Gould made the 24-yard game-winner with four seconds left and made sure the Bears’ sideline saw it.
After the win, Gould thanked the Bears’ front office for his release, as it allowed him to rework his technique (and end up on a team with a worse record than even Chicago, but whatever). From the Chicago Tribune:
“It motivated me. It drives me every day,” he said. “I have Ryan Pace and Jeff Rodgers and John Fox to thank for that. Because if I would’ve stayed here, who knows what my career would have ended like?
“But you never want somebody to tell you that you weren’t good at your job.”
Head coach John Fox didn’t have much to say about being owned by his former kicker: