The Bears will release Cody Parkey at the start of the league year, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. Rapoport hears that Parkey is embracing the fresh start and it doesn’t hurt that Parkey is still owed a guaranteed $3.5MM from Chicago in 2019.
The 27-year-old missed a potential game winner against the Eagles in the opening round of the playoffs, putting him on thin ice. His 43-yard try off the upright was a heartbreaker, though it wasn’t exactly Parkey’s fault as it was tipped by defensive tackle Treyvon Hester. After that, he may have put his job in further jeopardy when he made a guest appearance on NBC’s Today show to discuss the miss. The lighthearted segment rubbed head coach Matt Nagy the wrong way and drew the ire of many Bears fans.
“For me, you understand that we always talk about a ‘we’ and not a ‘me’ thing,” Nagy said. “We always talk as a team, we win as a team, we lose as a team. You know, I just, I didn’t necessarily think that that was too much of a ‘we’ thing.”
By discontinuing Parkey’s four-year, $15MM deal, the Bears will be left with a $4.4MM dead cap hit for the upcoming year.
Soon after Parkey’s national TV appearance, the Bears auditioned a group of six or seven kickers including Nick Folk, Blair Walsh, and Austin MacGinnis. They wound up signing one of the lesser-known names, Redford Jones, after the tryout.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.