Only a wacky TV stunt — helicopters flying over Soldier Field to get a glimpse of Cody Parkey practicing field goals Wednesday night — seemed to unnerve the Bears as they attempted to move on from Parkey’s disastrous performance against the Lions last week.
“No comment,” special-teams coordinator Chris Tabor said when asked about TV-station helicopters hovering over Soldier Field.
Other than that, Parkey’s practice at Soldier Field was “a good experience” that the Bears think will be beneficial after Parkey missed two field goals and two extra points — hitting an upright each time — in the Bears’ 34-22 victory against the Lions last Sunday. The Bears planned to have Parkey practice again Thursday night at Soldier Field, but the session was not open to the media.
The session on Wednesday was “awesome,” Tabor said. “I think it was something you can continue to do. It was good.”
Though it’s highly unusual to miss four kicks in one game, Tabor and Parkey are treating it as just a bad game rather than an indication of a bigger problem.
“I have to admit, I’ve seen misses, [but] I’ve never seen four misses hit the uprights before,” Tabor said. “As disappointing as those misses were, they weren’t all over the place . . . [where] you say, ‘Boy, we have something technically wrong.’
“He actually struck the ball really well, and it just leaked on him. Every upright he hit was the way the wind was blowing. So to be able to go down to the stadium and continue with that thought process and learning the lines and finding things, I think it’s gonna be very beneficial for him.”
The pressure will be on Parkey when the Bears play the Vikings in a nationally televised NFC North game Sunday night. But Tabor is confident Parkey can handle it.
“I know what’s under the hood with this kid,” Tabor said. “That’s why I’m excited for him. I believe in him. It was one of those things. We’ll never get it back. That’s how we look at it. Let’s move forward and get on a run.”
Coach Matt Nagy echoed that sentiment.
“I don’t know if you guys are understanding this or not, but the kid has confidence in himself,” Nagy said. “It was an issue for him that day. It was an issue for our team that day. But we’re past that. We’re worried about other stuff.”
Rookie wide receiver Javon Wims (knee) was limited in practice. Tight end Dion Sims (concussion) did not practice. Tight end Adam Shaheen, still on injured reserve, remains “day-to-day.”
† Vikings linebacker Anthony Barr, who has missed the last two games, returned to practice on a limited basis.