- Rich Campbell at the Chicago Tribune interviews former Bears consultant Ernie Accorsi.
“Then, the two coordinators, I was thrilled when I saw that we got those two guys. That’s really the beginnings of a great staff, right there.”
That “we” is significant, I think. Accorsi must have liked the work he did here. He identifies himself with the organization even though technically his job is done. That bodes well for the Bears future with a young GM that will undoubtedly need some advice every once in a while.
This is a great, wide-ranging interview, by the way. A lot can be learned about football from Accorsi’s thought processes. This section on how Bears general manager Ryan Pace came to be on his radar is a good example:
“I always look at who’s making the player personnel decisions on a team, and do they have players they’re getting in the middle rounds they’re winning with? You have to do that today. You only have seven picks, and the draft is still your lifeblood.
“‘And I look at the Steelers — that’s why I think (GM) Kevin Colbert is so good. They have third-, fourth-, fifth-, sixth-round draft choices that they’re winning in the playoffs with every year. And New Orleans rebuilt that team in a hurry, and that’s how they rebuilt it. Listen, (quarterback Drew) Brees was a big pickup and all. That’s fine. But you look all through that line, and you have players playing all through those two lineups that they picked in the middle or lower rounds. So, on paper, I thought, ‘Someone has to be making the right decisions here.'”
- Former Bears returner Devin Hester needs to speak for himself:
“The city of Chicago knows and disagrees with the situation they made. For a guy like Brian Urlacher, probably one of the top three or five names that ever played in Chicago — for his career to end like that, that’s tough.”
I did not disagree with the way that Urlacher exited. Though we were all sad to see him go, he was given a fair offer and turned it down. Notably, no one else signed him and, as far as anyone knows, no one offered him anywhere near what the Bears did.
Having said that, I look back on Hester’s exit with some regret. We’ll never know what kind of receiver he would have made here. He’s not a big “go up and get it” guy and he had a quarterback who was unable or flat out unwilling to throw to him. I think he could speak for the city of Chicago if he said we all wish him well in Atlanta.
- These Tribune polls have been around for some time now and I’m rarely surprised at the results. Nor did this one which asks “Should the Bears tell Brandon Marshall not to do ‘Inside the NFL‘ next season?” did. Almost 90% of you said “yes”. There’s no actual direct benefit to Bears fans to Marshall being on. So the logical, selfish response would ordinarily be “yes”.Probably most of the voters assumed Marshall wouldn’t be around in Chicago so it wouldn’t matter anyway. There’s been a ground swell against Marshall since the season ended amongst both fans and media. His locker room outburst early in the season didn’t help but I’m sure most of it is lack of production in what was a miserable season.
Don’t hold your breath thinking that Marshall will be gone. He was playing hurt most of the year and he’s one of the few players on the team that I thought played with the talent, the guts and the desire of a winner. I’m confident that I’m not the only one who knows it and I’m reasonably certain he’ll be back whether he’s on Inside the NFL or not.
- Lance Briggs comments on the Bears coaching situation:
“‘John [Fox], I think, he’s the right man for the job,’ Briggs said. ‘I’ve seen John over the years. He’s had a lot of success in the NFL. He understands the NFL. He’s a football coach.’
“And former coach Marc Trestman?
“‘Some things worked. Some things don’t,’ Briggs said. ‘Marc is a good man. I wish him all the success over in Baltimore. It just was what it was.'”
Give Briggs credit. Since his last contract negotiation was over he’s usually said all of the right things. I just wish he’d done the right things more often.
- Brad Biggs at the Chicago Tribune on new Bears defensive coordinator Vic Fangio:
“After joining the 49ers following a year at Stanford under Jim Harbaugh, Fangio waited until he saw his players in person after the 2011 lockout to make major decisions with his defense. That meant the plan didn’t unfold until after he had seen them on the practice field beginning in late July. Fangio didn’t want to have his opinion of players potentially shaped from film of them in a different scheme with different coaches. He waited to see the talent personally, plugged in players in the right spots and the 49ers’ defense took off immediately.”
Assuming that we’re looking at a hybrid scheme, it looks like Bears defenders are going to have a lot to learn very quickly this year. Over the last decade, Bears players have basically been asked to play one basic position one way and do it extremely well. This is going to be a lot different. It should be interesting to see how well they adapt.
- For those who care the NFL’s full statement Friday about the ongoing “inflate-gate” investigation cane be found here.
- Hub Arkush at chicagofootball.com tells you exactly why I dislike Seattle coach Pete Carroll:
“[Bill] Belichick was found to have violated league rules in “Spygate” and was fined $500,000, and the Patriots lost a first-round draft choice. Now he is implicated — although not charged — in the deflated footballs incident, and many are calling him a cheater.
“Carroll built a dynasty at USC and then had it all wiped out by findings of rampant rules violations while he skipped town just ahead of the posse to take the Seattle job.
“Asked about that on media day, Carroll responded he never talks about it because he still thinks the NCAA was wrong. Mmm huh.
“Earlier this season Seattle was fined over $300,000 and docked two 2015 minicamp practices due to Carroll overseeing illegal practices this past summer.
“I guess they’re both cheaters, but only the Patriots coach is being branded with the scarlet C this week. Is that because Belichick has won so much more than Carroll, or because Carroll is so much more media friendly?”
Probably both. But neither excuses it.
One Final Thought
One has to wonder how the Bears expect Cutler to run an offense when this is what happens at home with the kids when Kristin Cavallari is away. Cavallari had apparently just arrived at the airport when this exchange took place:
Jaxon is 2 and Camden is 8 months old.
[Edit 2/1/15: After getting some comments from friends on this post it occurs to me that I need to point out that I am, indeed, joking.
My sister in law was pregnant with twins (they would have been her third and fourth child) and my mother was going on about how much fun it was. My father turned to me and said, “She doesn’t remember. You were three, your brother was two and we had newborn twins. There were evening where all I could do was shut the door, sit on on the bed and put my head in my hands.”
Don’t worry. I don’t like Cutler but I wouldn’t blame him for this.]