Dan Durkin at The Athletic answers your questions:
— Double Deuce (@JR4151947) April 16, 2017
“If Myles Garrett and Solomon Thomas go first and second respectively, you’ll learn a lot about who is in charge and where the franchise thinks it is. This scenario gives Pace the option of taking the top quarterback in the class, or the top defensive back in a very deep and talented class. If a quarterback is taken, it’s clearly [general manager Ryan] Pace’s team and timeline. If a defensive player is selected, [head coach John] Fox’s preservation plan is still alive and well.
“All moves point to this team being in the middle of a long rebuild. But Fox seems to be under more pressure to win. Pace inherited an aging roster from Phil Emery, who was simply not good at picking players. Truth hurts. Thus, Pace has more time to build this roster.”
I have to disagree with this completely. I’ve seen no indication whatsoever that Pace and Fox aren’t joined at the hip.
Yes, the Bears are, indeed, in the middle of a long rebuild. But I fail to see how ownership can cut Pace slack on what is a much poorer roster talent-wise than it was when he took over while not giving Fox more time to win with the same roster.
The strong suspicion here is that the team needs to show improvement next year but not as much as some people seem to think. If things still appear to be headed in the right direction, even if it’s slowly, George McCaskey will likely continue to be patient with both Pace and Fox.
And the guess here is that the Bears definitely will show improvement. Three wins is a low bar to exceed and the truth is that a Bears team with even average health beats that by a win or two with no off-season improvements at all. If the Bears win 5 to 6 games, both men are probably safe.