Scenario #1: Cody Parkey has a bad game
The Bears haven’t shown a lot of weaknesses this year, but one area that is definitely concerning is the kicking game. Kicker Cody Parkey has had a lot of issues this season, and it’s not like they’re in the distant past.
Parkey made national headlines this season when he had four kicks hit either the left or right upright in a game against the Detroit Lions. He missed a game-winning field goal in overtime against the Miami Dolphins in week six, although it was a 52-yard attempt.
While Parkey improved as the year went on, he’s still shanked a random short field goal or extra point attempt here and there throughout the season. Just last week, Parkey badly missed an extra point in an indoor stadium.
That’s not to say that Parkey’s season has been totally ugly. In week 11, just one week removed from his four uprights performance, Parkey made three field goals in a key game against the Minnesota Vikings, including a 48-yard kick to help seal the win.
I feel like this is the most likely playoff pitfall the Bears could face. There are so many close games in the NFL playoffs. There are memorable moments that involve kickers either drilling a kick to win a playoff game or shanking one to experience the agony of defeat.
Here’s hoping Parkey can be on the right side of history this postseason. If he does miss a big kick that costs the Bears their season, you can bet that will be the last game he plays in a Bears uniform.