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Robert Paul "Robbie" Gould III (pronounced /ˈɡoʊld/; born December 30, 1981) is an American football placekicker for the Chicago Bears of the National Football League. He was originally signed by the New England Patriots as an undrafted free agent in 2005. He played college football at Penn State. He is the third most accurate kicker in NFL history.
Gould was born to Cheryl and Robert Gould in Jersey Shore, Pennsylvania. His father was a three-time All-American soccer player who led Lock Haven University to a Division III national championship in 1977. and was drafted by the St. Louis Steamers in the early 80s. His brother, Christopher, was formerly a kicker and punter for the University of Virginia. He attended Central Mountain High School in Mill Hall, Pennsylvania, where he won letters in football, soccer, basketball, and track. During the 2000 Boys' Soccer District Championship, Gould scored the game winning goal with seconds left. Although originally interested in becoming a professional soccer player, he eventually chose to pursue a career in football, asking his high school principal to send a letter of recommendation to Penn State head football coach, Joe Paterno, who invited Gould to try out as a freshman walk-on.
The defending Super Bowl champion New England Patriots signed rookie free-agent Gould prior to the 2005 NFL preseason, despite the fact they already had Adam Vinatieri. Following his preseason release from the Patriots, Gould next signed with the Baltimore Ravens, only to be waived three weeks later. Following his stint with Baltimore, Gould worked construction at M&R Contracting in Mill Hall, Pennsylvania. The Bears signed him on October 8, 2005, following the Week 3 injury of their starting kicker, Doug Brien. Gould kicked his first NFL field goal the next week in a 20-10 loss at Cleveland, and his first game-winner in week nine against the New Orleans Saints. He would finish the 2005 season with a 77% field goal percentage and hitting all but one of his 20 PAT attempts.
Gould kicked 26 consecutive field goals during the 2006 NFL season. His accomplishments broke former Bears’ kicker Kevin Butler’s record of most consecutive field goals, and landed him acclaim as the NFL Special Teams Player of the Month for October 2006. Additionally, NFL fans across the nation selected Gould as the NFC’s kicker for the 2007 Pro Bowl. He was also named to the 2006 All-Pro team by the Associated Press. Gould made a 25-yard field goal in overtime against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, allowing the Bears to emerge victorious and clinch home field advantage throughout the playoffs. On January 14, 2007, Gould kicked a 49-yard field goal in overtime against the Seattle Seahawks, enabling the Bears to win their first divisional playoff game since 1988 and advance to the NFC Championship game. The Bears won the NFC Championship game, but lost Super Bowl XLI, 29-17.
Gould was named NFC special teams player of the month for December 2008 after making all eight of his field goal attempts, including two game-winners in overtime. Gould became just the fourth kicker in NFL history to hit game-winning field goals in overtime in back-to-back games. Gould converted 26 of 29 field goal attempts (89.7 percent) in 2008, breaking his own franchise single-season record for accuracy. Going into the 2009 season, Gould had converted 84.8 of his career field goal attempts. He has only ever missed one extra point attempt.
On May 12, 2008, Gould signed an extension with the Bears that would keep him on the team through the 2013 season. The contract, reportedly worth $15.5 million, which includes a $4.25 million signing bonus, makes Gould the NFL's highest-paid kicker.
On October 4, 2009 Gould kicked a career long 52.5-yard field goal against the Detroit Lions. Gould had never successfully kicked a field goal over 50 yards prior to that.
Gould practices at the Bears 2008 Summer Training Camp
He is good friends with teammates Patrick Mannelly and Brad Maynard, who directly assist Gould on every field goal and extra point attempt as the long snapper and holder, respectively.
Gould performed Take me out to the ball game during the Seventh inning stretch at a Chicago Cubs' game on April 17, 2009, after throwing the first pitch. He later had an interview with WGN-TV's commentators, Len Kasper and Bob Brenly.
Despite the misleading spelling of his surname, "Gould" is pronounced "gōld", just like Gold, prompting many announcers to use the phrase "Gould is gold" or "Good as Gould" when scoring a field goal.
|Chicago Bears Kickers
|Penn State Starting Placekickers
Charles Atherton • Carl Forkum • Larry Vorhis • Johnny Roepke • Vince O’Bara • Bill Leonard • Jim Garrity • Milt Plum
• Emil Caprara • Don Jonas • Sam Stellatella • Henry Opperman • Don Jonas • Ron Coates • Gerry Sanker • Tom Sherman • Don Abbey • Rusty Garthwaite • Mike Reitz • John Hull • Alberto Vitiello • Chris Bahr
• Tony Capozzoli • Matt Bahr
• Herb Menhardt • Brian Franco • Nick Gancitano • Massimo Manca • Eric Etze • Ray Tarasi • Craig Fayak • Brett Conway
• Travis Forney • Ryan Primanti • David Kimball
• Robbie Gould
• Kevin Kelly
• Collin Wagner