The kicker competition at Bears Training Camp was for anyone who is neither a Bears fanatic nor a kicker audition for the job. Nine – one two three four five six seven eight nine kickers were initially drummed and thrown together in Matt Nagy's strange, self-deprecating quest to somehow banish all traces of Double Doink from our dimension. This process had its final dress rehearsal Thursday night in a Bears show against the Titans with Eddy Pineiro, the tenth kicker, just before taking on the job.
Pineiro beat a 58-yarder against the Colts in Chicago's last home preseason game, which is a pretty good indication that he has the leg for the job. Thursday night was essentially a formality as there were no other kickers in the camp. And then, after a Bears touchdown in the first quarter, Pineiro raised an extra point and tore the kick so hard that he even missed the damn net that kept the ball from sailing into the bleacher:
Pineiro recovered well and shot three relatively short field goals without another missed shot, resulting in a four-point Bears loss. And the conditions were far less than ideal due to the swirling wind, which made Pineiro's successes a little more impressive and made his miss a little more understandable. Nagy spoke about Pineiro's resilience after it was over but was particularly careful to formulate an answer to Pineiro's development regarding when he is the starting kicker of the team in week one. There is still time for the bears to appear as kicker in the league, they are scrapped in the last roster sections.
Pineiro said, "I felt like giving everything I have." This was not exactly the confidence-inspiring finale the fans of Matt Nagy and Bears had hoped for. The search continues.