After being with the Chicago Bears since 2005, kicker Robbie Gould was a surprise cut by the team on the eve of what would have been his 12th season in the Windy City. Now with the New York Giants, Gould is set to face his old team, his September release perhaps a blessing given the state of things in Chicago.
Gould has been solid for the Giants this year, not a major surprise given his steady kicking last season with the Bears where he made 33-of-39 field goal attempts and missed just one of his 29 point-after attempts. His release by the Bears was not expected, especially since by all accounts he acclimated well in the locker room and was still kicking at a high level. But when the Giants were forced to release Josh Brown several weeks ago following new revelations about domestic violence, the door opened for Gould to come to New York.
Now his Giants team is 6-3 and hosts the 2-7 Bears on Sunday afternoon. Gould spoke about hopefully making the playoffs with his new team, something that would be a reach to say were his still with the Bears.
The decision to cut him came out of left field.
“Yeah, I didn’t see it coming. Obviously, they cut me at nine o’clock at night on Sunday right before the first week, we never had conversations about that,” Gould told reporters on Wednesday. “I was preparing to play the Houston Texans, but they made a decision that my performance wasn’t what they were looking for, and those are decisions that organizations get to make. So for me, I am just excited to be in this locker room with a great group of guys, getting a chance to do what I love to do and do it to the best of my abilities and help the team win.”
With the Giants he’s made his lone field goal attempt, a 29-yard attempt in London against the Los Angeles Rams in Week 7 and he’s also converted all nine extra point attempts. There are concerns about his leg strength on kickoffs – the Bengals returned all four kickoffs on Monday night – but he’s been solid in the wake of Brown’s release.
John Fox on a conference call with the New York media said cutting Gould was not an easy decision. The longtime Bear was diplomatic in his response to his head coach and certainly doesn’t openly harbor a grudge.
“He is a great coach," Gould said. "Obviously he has a long list of wins under his belt. He has coached teams to Super Bowls. There are tough decisions that get made all the time and they made decisions that they had to make to make their team better, and it is just something that they did. I am not mad about it. I am not upset about it.
“I had a great run there, and I hope we have a better run here Sunday than they do and realistically, I was talking to Coach McAdoo at practice, what do I have to be upset about? I got to play with one team for 11 years with a lot of great teammates, with a lot of good memories and they made a decision. I am really happy here, I love being a Giant, I love being in the Giants organization and I have a lot of respect for the guys that are going to be across from me playing, so hopefully we come out with a win.”