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Notre Dame Football: Justin Yoon Enters Chicago Bears’ Search for New Kicker, Leaves Empty-Handed

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A distance of 43 yards was the downfall for 6 of 8 kickers in the crowded kicking competition.

NCAA Football: Michigan at Notre Dame Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

This weekend’s Chicago Bears rookie minicamp put special teams in the spotlight and featured some critical Notre Dame representation. Former Irish kicker Justin Yoon was one of eight candidates to replace former Bears kicker Cody Parkey.

Yoon is the leading scorer in Notre Dame Fighting Irish football history with 329 career points.

Bears head coach Matt Nagy intentionally emphasized Parkey’s infamous “double doink” in the Bears’ 2018 wild card matchup against the Philadelphia Eagles in laying out this weekend’s kicking competition. During Friday’s practice, the eight kicked from 43 yards, the same distance as Parkey’s season-ending kick. Yoon, Chris Blewitt, Emmit Carpenter, Elliot Fry, Casey Bednarski and Redford Jones failed the symbolic test. John Baron II and Spencer Evans both made their attempts.

Saturday provided some redemption with Yoon, Evans, Carpenter, Bednarski, Blewitt and Fry all securing 42 yard attempts. Today’s practice narrowed the pool to Jones and Bednarski, to no clear replacement for Parkey.

Nagy did not mention Yoon in tonight’s press conference recapping this weekend’s minicamp.

Yoon received a discouraging answer in ending the weekend without a roster spot, but the Bears’ special teams recovery remains uncertain.

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