Skip to main content

K Robbie Gould 'would've loved' to return to 49ers: 'I told them I wanted to go back there'

Robbie Gould is still without an NFL home ahead of what would be his 19th season, but he spoke last week about his exit from the San Francisco 49ers, his team of the last six years.

"I would've loved to have gone back there," Gould said at the American Century Championship, per NBC Sports Bay Area’s Matt Maiocco. "I told them I wanted to go back there. We never got an offer from the team and we never had a conversation about coming back."

The 40-year-old kicker is coming off a season in which he made 27 field goals, converting on 84.4% of his 32 attempts. And for the third time in the last four years, Gould missed just one extra point. He's also carved out an extraordinarily clutch postseason career, maintaining perfect marks through 29 field goals and 39 extra points attempted across 16 playoff games.

Nonetheless, the 49ers chose to go younger and cheaper at the position heading into 2023, apparently never breaching the topic of a return with Gould. San Francisco instead traded for 28-year-old Zane Gonzalez and spent a third-round pick on kicker Jake Moody.

"The change wasn't my decision," Gould said. "Obviously, at the end of the season, they had to make a decision, and ultimately they wanted to go in a different direction. We put out the tweet that we were going to go in a different direction once we found that out. It was a great run, and it was a lot of fun. I wish all my teammates nothing but the best."

Gould also spoke highly of 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan with that chapter being closed, calling him an "offensive genius," but his attention now turns toward finding the fourth team of his NFL career.

Along with other longtime kickers like Mason Crosby, 38, and Ryan Succop, 36, he remains a free agent with training camp just over the horizon.

It's likely Gould and the rest will have to bide their time, waiting for an injury or a failed competition between lesser-proven talent to present another opportunity. Should a team feel the need to turn to an older, more reliable option as camp exposes any potential special teams problems, there's none available with a more trusty track record than the former Niner.

Although he has just one Pro Bowl appearance and one All-Pro season on his résumé, Gould currently stands as the eighth-most accurate kicker in NFL history with an 86.46 field-goal percentage.

He's primed to deliver for whatever club comes calling.

"I know training camp is coming up and I'm ready for the next opportunity," Gould said. "And I'm sure these teams will give these young kids a chance and find out who has a chance to compete. I think things will get a lot more serious. But, yeah, I'm ready to go and looking forward to the next season."

Related Content