Could Edinger get the Boot?

Jerry Angelo continues to push Paul Edinger by agreeing to terms Thursday with kicker Jon Hilbert on a two-year contract worth almost $700,000.

Hilbert will challenge Edinger, particularly for kickoff duties. Various kickers were brought in through training camp and Halas Hall at the beginning of last season, but no move was made. Edinger went on to hit 26 of 31 field goals, which established a Bears single-season record for accuracy converting 83,8 percent of his attempts on his way to 112 points, the most by a Bears kicker since Kevin Butler had 114 in 1995.

He also set a team-record 13 field goals of at least 40 yards. Edinger's career percentage of 81.0 (46 of 57) tops Jeff Jaeger (75.9) and Butler (72.9) as the best in Bears history.

Despite his success with field goal Edinger has had to win the kicking job in his first two training camps with the Bears. He battled Jaret Holmes, Jeff Jaeger and Michael Husted in 2000 and Vitaly Pisetsky last summer. Edinger will find himself in a similar situation this summer because he lacks distance on kickoffs.

With the Cowboys, Hilbert went 11-for-16 on field goals while filling in for injured Tim Seder. Hilbert, a 6-2, 230-pounder, finished the season by making 9 of 11 attempts but hit just 2-for-7 from 40 to 49 yards.

The Louisville product originally signed with Dallas as an undrafted free agent in 2000 but was released before training camp. He spent training camp with the Buffalo Bills in 2000 and the New Orleans Saints in 2001.

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