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Diving Into the Offseason: GM Interviews, Coaching Candidates & the Free Agent List

| January 5th, 2015

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  • Bears set to interview Lake Dawson (Tuesday) and Chris Ballard (Wednesday) for their GM position, per Adam Schefter. You know what I’d like to see from the Bears this week? Once they identify the guy they want, hire him. If Ballard is the guy they’ve truly wanted since even before they fired Phil Emery a week ago (as was suggested in multiple locations), don’t let him leave Halas Hall Wednesday without discussing terms of the contract and scheduling the press conference for Thursday morning. The firings of Emery and Trestman were decisive actions by owner George McCaskey. Let’s keep that decisiveness going.
  • Here’s what worries me about Todd Bowles: his sideline demeanor reminds me of Marc Trestman and Lovie Smith and Dick Jauron. Bruce Arians described Bowles as “soft-spoken” and haven’t we seen how sideline stoicism plays in the city of Chicago? You can call this a non-issue if you like but the lack of fire and passion from the Bears has been a major issue over the last two seasons. McCaskey should be looking for a man to change that.
  • Second thought on this. Jim Fassel coached the Giants to a Super Bowl appearance during his time with the Giants but he was a nightmare off the field and was way too lenient with his players inside the locker room. Longtime Giants owner Wellington Mara wanted to follow Fassel with the polar opposite. He went to Tom Coughlin. Giants won two titles.

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Audibles From the Long Snapper: Cutler in 2015, Rodgers on Kromer, Lovie Love, Conte the Immortal & DBB Tailgate Info!

| December 19th, 2014

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#6 IN 2015 DOESN’T MEAN #6 FOREVER

Cutting or trading Jay Cutler makes no sense – fiscally or footbally (deal with it, I am using that as an adverb). The Bears should absolutely be looking for the future at the position but in the meantime you don’t throw away the type of production Cutler provides from the quarterback position. Fans and media seem to believe keeping Cutler and looking to the position in the coming drafts are mutually exclusive concepts. They are not. But if the Bears decide to make a move away from Cutler without a replacement in place they could be doomed to another decade of nightmares at the position.

RODGERS WEIGHS IN ON KROMER

Mike Silver spoke with Aaron Rodgers regarding Bears offensive coordinator Aaron Kromer and all that stuff he did. (To read the entire worthwhile piece, CLICK HERE.) An excerpt:

“I would have a major problem if somebody said something like that,” Rodgers said Tuesday during an interview at Lambeau Field. “I think anybody that plays the position, you can’t help but empathize with Jay for that situation. You talk all the time about being connected, being a unit, believing in each other. But if you have unnamed sources, people out there cutting you down, and then you find out it’s the person calling the plays — that would be really hard to deal with, to look at him the same way.”

Though Kromer reportedly apologized to Cutler — and the quarterback later said he “wasn’t angry” with his coordinator and that the team was in a “better place” following the meeting in question — Rodgers was far less forgiving.

“I felt for Jay that he was having to deal with that,” Rodgers said. “And I was surprised that the coach came out and admitted that it was him. I think, in general, unnamed sources are pretty gutless. But then he comes out and admits it was him. I don’t think he deserves any credit for that, but it was interesting that he did.”

I have listened to all the reasons Aaron Kromer still has a job on Marc Trestman’s staff. Not one of those reasons is good enough. But this is what happens when your head coach is not a leader of men. He forgives treasonous behavior to avoid disruption.

Here is a text I received from a former Bears player when I asked him how he’d respond to the Kromer admission: “I would never take a word he said seriously again”. Sounds like the perfect coach for the 2014 Bears.

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Why a Chris Conte Renaissance Could Go a Long Way Towards Defining the 2014 Bears on Defense

| August 11th, 2014

The 2013 Chicago Bears season came to a fittingly sad conclusion.

Chris Conte, one of the emerging stars of the previous campaign who seemed to have not only lost his way in the secondary but his confidence as well, missed an assignment. The physical side of the game had let him down all season long. Now the mental side was delivering a final, crippling blow. Peppers leaps. Kuhn blocks. Rodgers scrambles. Cobb scores. The culprit was Conte. Not only had he, in that moment, become the poster child for this devastating loss. That wasn’t enough to pour onto the slumping shoulders of a beleaguered safety. No, in that moment, Conte became the symbol of the entire season’s defensive futility.

Shots were fired at Conte from every discernible angle. Once news of an off-season surgery surfaced many, myself included, wrote off Conte’s potential future with the Chicago Bears. When Marc Silverman of ESPN Radio bet Tom Waddle Conte would not play a down for the Bears this season, Conte met that challenge with a Twittery terrific, “fuck u all.”

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A Few Questions to Ponder as Bears Prepare for a Pivotal Offseason

| January 15th, 2014

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I don’t really have a coherent column in my mind right so I decided to just lay out some Bears-related questions on my mind. Feel free to provide your own answers in the comments sections or by email: jeff@dabearsblog.com.

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An Additional Sentence (or Two) on Each Defensive Performance Against the Ravens

| November 19th, 2013

postBefore we completely turn our attention to the St. Louis Rams, a few additional thoughts on the Bears defense after a re-watch of the ballgame. Here’s one sentence on every guy.

ZACK BOWMAN

Bowman is not the best coverage corner around but Sunday he displayed the secondary’s best closing speed to the ball and surest tackling.

JON BOSTIC

Bostic is a sideline-to-sideline monster who can cover the deep middle but his major flaw as a young player is an inability to shed blocks.

CHRIS CONTE

Baltimore ran the ball on two of their final three plays in regulation and both of those runs were stopped due primarily to the efforts of Conte. He is starting to piece together something of a coherent safety. I’d also add that Conte had PERFECT coverage on Dallas Clark when Clark converted fourth-and-four with three minutes to go in regulation. Clark’s special catch prevented Conte from being celebrated as a hero.

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Trestman and the Opportunity of Monday Night

| November 1st, 2013

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We don’t want to overstate the importance of Monday night’s game at Lambeau for Bears head coach Marc Trestman but sometimes we can’t help it. Packers games always feel a bit bigger than others and primetime games are the ones national media members use to deliver their misguided opinions. (Hey, maybe they are a good offense but they weren’t good when I saw them so they’re not good!”) Like it or not, the Bears will dominate the conversation across the sports world Tuesday morning.

Is it a pivotal game for Trestman? It can be. If the Bears deliver an intense, noteworthy performance (especially on defense) all the credit will go to Trestman as his captains have been sidelined with injury. If Josh McCown leads the offense up and down the field against Green Bay, all the credit will go to Trestman for whispering to yet another mediocre quarterback. Nothing is expected from the Bears. Everything they produce will be credited to the new head coach.

That is what comes from being the offensive “savior” in a city starved for offense. Read More …

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