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Bears special teams coach: Communication before Eddy Pineiro’s miss was ‘spot on’

Rather than shed light on the Bears’ communication process before field goals, special teams coordinator Chris Tabor tried to move past Eddy Pineiro’s 41-yard miss on the final play of the game Sunday.

Bears kicker Eddy Piñeiro misses the game-winning field goal wide left from 41 yards Sunday.
Eddy Piñeiro went wide left from 41 yards.
AP

Rather than shed light on the Bears’ communication process before field goals, special-teams coordinator Chris Tabor tried to move past Eddy Pineiro’s 41-yard miss on the final play of the game Sunday.

The rookie — whose kick in a right-to-left wind sailed wide left — said Tuesday that kicking from the left hash mark wasn’t his preference.

Like coach Matt Nagy said the day before, Tabor on Thursday refused to offer many details about his conversations before the kick. He said he wanted to focus on the Eagles. Thursday, though, was Tabor’s first chance to speak to the media about the 17-16 loss to the Chargers.

“First of all, I would prefer that Eddy makes the kick . . . ” Tabor said. “And he will make that kick, I do know that. I also think, [Nagy] has addressed it, there’s nothing to say. . . .

“So really to me, there’s no story. I know what the narrative is, but that’s that.”

Yet there was plenty left unanswered: whether Tabor communicated a hash mark preference to Nagy; if Nagy simply ignored it; or whether quarterback Mitch Trubisky took a knee at the wrong part of the field. Trubisky said Wednesday he knelt where he was told.

Tabor said the communication was “spot-on” — no pun intended, presumably. He talks to Nagy throughout the game.

“It was a 41-yard field goal,” Tabor said. “It wasn’t a 54- or 55-yard[er].”

A kicker’s preference “doesn’t matter,” he said.

“As I have stated here multiple times and I told the kid: ‘You hit your ball, you play your line. If Mother Nature takes it, we will have to talk to Mother Nature,’ ” Tabor said. “And I’ve also said that sometimes it’s also going to hurt if it’s in that type of situation.”

Earmuffs and blinders?

Nagy has told his players to have “earmuffs and blinders” on to block out noise but won’t dare force them to stop using Twitter.

“The Twitter thing, in this day and age, it’s like impossible,” he said. “That’s hard to do. It’s more so all of us just generically speaking — let’s just focus on what we can focus on, let’s not let other things derail what we think.”

Even Nagy tunes out his friends and family who share negativity.

“They’ve got it loud and clear: You don’t say a word to me,” he said with a smile. “You say a word, you get knocked out.”

Injury updates

Bears backup outside linebacker Isaiah Irving remained out Thursday with a quad injury. Eagles running back Miles Sanders practiced in full after missing Wednesday with a shoulder injury. Linebacker Nigel Bradham (ankle), guard Brandon Brooks (illness) and offensive tackle Jason Peters (knee) did not participate.