My First Day As Chicago Bears GM

by JoeYancey

Okay, I’m going to be the Chicago Bears’ General Manager for roughly 2 minutes. That’s how long this read should take.

My first order of business is NOT to invest significant time into replacing Mitch Trubisky. We will talk about Mitchell, but not yet. My second order of business is signing Allen Robinson. There are no pieces more important. This is the central piece of the offense. In closing: (to this paragraph at least,) I give Big Al whatever the bleep he wants, within reason.

Allen Robinson makes a catch against the New Orleans Saints

Okay, quarterback: Need #1A: Nick Foles will be under contract next season and will be the 19th best backup in the league if he has a good year. Weird right? You sign a 31-year-old to a guaranteed $6.7 million contract, and he becomes exactly what he’s been for a decade… a backup. How strange is that? WHO SAW THAT COMING? I would prefer anyone not named “Chicago Bears Front Office” to answer that question. I live in St. Louis. I was a Rams’ season ticket holder. This is NOT surprising. Please sack your scouting department, Chicago. The Philadelphia Eagles story was wonderful and the reason why we love sports, but Nick sucks. He’s not good. Let’s move on. “Moral victories are for Minor League coaches” – Jay Z

I have shifted on this many times, but finally… here is where I stand. Keep Mitch, for cheap if you can. By cheap, I mean $2 million or less, max 3 years. Trubisky’s passer rating over the last 5 regular-season games was 101.6. Excluding the Green Bay game, it’s 107.6. Now, I understand it wasn’t against the best competition, but these are still NFL teams. Mitch ended the season with a passer rating of 93.5, ranking 21st. Better than Matt Ryan, Jared Goff, Joe Burrow, Drew Lock, and obviously Nick Foles.

Mitchell

My cohort, Joe Marshall likes to refer to these as “gap years,” which for Chicago, it is. The 20th pick is not going to net you anything better than Mitch at pick 20. If it does, it’s dumb luck. We also know that Chicago is the Michael Phelps of drafting the wrong quarterback, so why even try? Stay out of the race if you ain’t got running shoes.

Okay, here I go… offer Mitch $4 million guaranteed over 2 years with some performance bonuses attached. Go get Joe Flacco. I would slightly favor Alex Smith, but there is considerable uncertainty on his health, deservedly so. Flacco will be inexpensive, effective, and just enough to return to the Bears to the playoffs. He’s a proven winner, that doesn’t turn the ball over and stays healthy. And let’s not act like Ryan FitzMagic won’t go to The Windy City for the right money. The man is talented and very capable of winning. Fitz is THE MOST UNDERRATED QUATERBACK IN NFL HISTORY. You disagree? Fight me!

The most handsome and most capable, Joseph Flacco

Draft an offensive tackle in the first round. This is a hole that needs to be filled. The 2021 draft will be skill-set heavy, the first 15 picks or so. Lots of QBs, WRs and RBs coming off the board early. The best of the best O-linemen will be available at pick 20.

Many mock drafts have the Bears taking a QB in round 1, and a WR in round 2. These guys are smarter than me, but why? The Bears can afford to pursue a TY Hilton, Corey Davis, or Sammy Watkins. With an emerging David Montgomery, Allen Robinson, and some additions to the offensive line, which ranked 20th in the league in 2020, the Bears have an above-average offense. No need to rebuild. Just re-tool.

Sammy Watkins over-the-shoulder catch

To summarize Bears fans, as your new GM, I am dedicating this off-season to re-signing Allen Robinson, bringing in consistent veteran help with or without Trubisky and Foles, investing heavily in our offensive line, and signing a sure-handed receiver in free agency.

With a defense that ranked 14th overall, I am happy. The defense was often gassed because they couldn’t get off the field. They’re disciplined, mostly and have many skill players, but when you find yourself on the field 65% of the game, I don’t care how good you’re conditioning is, it takes a toll. Hence the above paragraph. I will definitely add some pieces in the later rounds. The Bears have picks in rounds 3 and 5, as well, as 3 picks in round 6. Defensive weakness can be strengthened here, but start with beefing the offensive line in the early rounds. Onward and upward.

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