Year after Pro Bowl season, Bears sign kicker Gould to five-year extension
LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- Robbie Gould became the highest paid kicker, agreeing to a five-year, $15.5 million contract extension with the Chicago Bears that includes a $4.25 million signing bonus on Monday.
The deal runs through 2013.
"I'm excited about the contract I signed," Gould, who had a year left on his contract, said during a conference call with reporters. "I'm excited to be a Bear. ... This is definitely a win-win on both ends."
Gould has made 84 of 99 field-goal attempts and 99 of 100 PATs with the Bears. He hit 31 of 36 field-goal attempts last season and made the Pro Bowl after the 2006 season, when he scored 143 points.
Gould hit a game-winning 49-yarder in overtime to send the Bears past Seattle in the playoff opener following the 2005 season. Chicago went on to the Super Bowl.
His new deal trumps the five-year, $14.2 million contract Josh Brown signed with St. Louis on March 1.
"He obviously helped to set another standard, and I'm very happy he got his deal done, which helped me in order to set my parameters and work on getting a deal done with Chicago," Gould said.
Gould was an undrafted free agent out of Penn State in 2005. He first signed with New England, then spent time with Baltimore before going to the Bears in October of that year.
"It gives undrafted free agents an opportunity to step back and say, 'I can make it' and 'One day I can get to that point where I can get a new contract,'" Gould said. "You're just looking to get an opportunity, and it made my hungry. I knew that when I was cut from two teams that I would eventually get an opportunity. Would I have ever thought that I would have lasted this long with the Chicago Bears? Probably not, because it was supposed to be a week-to-week deal that turned out to be, hopefully, a long career in Chicago."
Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press
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