Bears kicker Cody Parkey honored for his turnaround game against the Vikings

CHICAGO, IL - NOVEMBER 18: Cody Parkey #1 of the Chicago Bears walks off of the field after defeating the Minnesota Vikings 25-20 at Soldier Field on November 18, 2018 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)

LAKE FOREST – Fortunes can flip in quite a hurry in the NFL, especially for the players handling the kicks.

Cody Parkey has learned that all too well in the most bizarre stretch of his NFL career.

Relatively anonymous most of his first season with the Bears, the kicker became the biggest story of the biggest week for the team after hitting the goalpost four times on four misses against the Lions. His Soldier Field workout was a major sidebar, and was even a “Made for TV” event, as everyone wondered how Parkey would recover from such a bizarre game.

We’ll it turns out the kicker has some pretty good resilience, and the NFL recognized that this week.

After hitting a trio of field goals without even coming close to the uprights, Parkey was named the NFC’s Special Teams Player of the Week. He becomes the first Bears’ player to do so since Robbie Gould in 2015, when the kicker also hit three field goals, including a 49-yarder in the final minute, in a 22-20 win over the Raiders at Soldier Field.

“We all believed in him in the locker room. There was never a doubt. That happens week to week in the NFL. But we just continue to come together closer as a team, support our guys, have each other’s back. I’m happy for Cody,” said Mitchell Trubisky of Parkey’s effort on Sunday. “He was big time tonight. He definitely delivered for this team and put some points on the board when we needed them.

“They were crucial, and he did a heck of a job.”

Indeed Parkey’s nine points were the difference in a 25-20 win over the Vikings that boosted the Bears’ record to 7-3 on the season and solidified their hold on the NFC North lead. The effort makes Parkey 16-of-21 on field goal attempts for 2018, though there is little time to rest on the achievement with the Bears facing the Lions on Thanksgiving morning.

But for the kicker and his teammates, the efforts and the honor conclude a most bizarre week that had a memorable ending.

“I know I’m going to have good games, I know I’m going to have bad games, you just try to stay even keel, and just go out there and try my best” said Parkey on Sunday. “Today it was clicking. Everything was working, and I didn’t have any pulls, so that’s good.”

Very good, to be exact.