SANTA CLARA — Kicker Robbie Gould signed a four-year contract with the San Francisco 49ers on Monday instead of playing this season on the franchise tag.
Gould had stayed away from the team during the offseason program and requested a trade back to Chicago, where he started his career and where his family still lives.
“Over the years, Robbie has established himself as one of the best at his position in the NFL, which is precisely why we were so committed to working out a new contract with him,” 49ers general manager John Lynch said. “I would like to thank everyone who worked so hard to make this deal come to fruition. We are very happy to start off the year on the right foot with this agreement in place so that Robbie can get back with his teammates and focus on making the most out of the upcoming season.”
The Bears had been hoping to bring back the NFL’s most accurate kicker over his two seasons with San Francisco. Chicago released kicker Cody Parkey after he missed a field goal off the left upright and crossbar in the closing seconds of a 16-15 wild-card loss to Philadelphia at home in January, and has struggled to find a replacement.
Gould Has Made 87.7% of His Field Goal Attempts
Gould, 36, was at the game with his family, which remained in the Chicago area even after the Bears released him following the 2015 season. But the 49ers didn’t want to part ways with one of their most reliable players and reached a long-term deal.
In two seasons with San Francisco, Gould has made 72 of 75 field goal attempts and 55 of 59 extra points. He leads the NFL in made field goals and field goal percentage over that span.
Gould has made 87.7% of his field goal attempts over his 14-year career, ranking second to Baltimore’s Justin Tucker for the best in NFL history among kickers with at least 100 made field goals. Gould missed only one of 33 field goal tries last season when he set a 49ers record for single-season accuracy.
In the three years since, he has combined to make 82 of 85 field goals for the New York Giants and San Francisco 49ers. Chicago kickers, by comparison, are 57 of 75 in that span.