Chicago Bears Kicker Who Missed Playoffs Field Goal Says He 'Let Down the Fans, My Teammates'
"As a kicker, you know you live for those moments," Cody Parkey tells PEOPLE
Cody Parkey’s harshest critic is himself.
The Chicago Bears placekicker appeared on the Today show, Friday, and opened up about missing what would have been a game-winning field goal in the Wild Card game against the Philadelphia Eagles last Sunday. The NFL later ruled that the kick was tipped by the Eagles Treyvon Hester, and changed the missed field goal to a blocked kick.
But, too little too late — Parkey was met with the ire of thousands of fans.
“As a kicker, you know you live for those moments,” Parkey told Today cohosts Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb. “I had a lot of confidence going into that kick. So I went out there, and my long snapper and holder did a great job. I saw the wind moving a little bit, I said ‘Alright, this is where I’m going to play it.’ And obviously, I didn’t know it was tipped or anything.”
Parkey, 26, said that he thought he “hit a very good kick” until he watched it hit the upright and crossfire.
“Obviously I’m disappointed, I let the fans, my teammates and the whole organization down, I’ll continue to keep my head held high, because football’s what I do, it’s not who I am,” Parkey said.
Parkey said he has avoided social media since the game, admitting, “a lot of good can come from it or a lot of bad can come from it.”
Still, he asserted of naysayers: “I feel worse than anybody about missing that kick because I wanted to make it more than anybody.”
“I’m going to continue to think positive and keep shining,” promised Parkey.
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Parkey has a lot of support from the team’s hometown, luckily — including local brewery, Goose Island.
The beer company is hosting a contest this weekend that will give anyone who can make Parkey’s field goal free beer for a year.
“A lot of armchair kickers on here are saying that they could hit that field goal, which we find DOUBTFUL. You’re gonna sit there on your throne of potato chips and vape pens and criticize this dude’s athleticism? GET REAL,” the brewery wrote on Twitter. “So you know what we’re going to do? Build a dang field goal post in the middle of the street outside of our brewery, and all you pro athletes can come out and prove us wrong.”