Chicago Sun-Times

Ch-ch-ch-changes: Bears coaching staff under Lovie Smith

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With linebackers coach Lloyd Lee becoming the third position coach to be removed from the Bears coaching staff in the week-and-a-half since the season-ending loss at Houston, coach Lovie Smith will have to replace as many position coaches as he ever has going into his fifth offseason in charge.

The Bears must find three position coaches on defense--one for the line, linebackers and secondary. If the dominos are not done falling yet at Halas Hall, the Bears could soon reach the most turnover they have had since the end of Smith's first season in 2004, the only other time he has replaced three position coaches. The only identified candidate that Smith is known to have met with is ex-Detroit Lions coach Rod Marinelli, who would likely have some role coaching the line if he comes on board.

Interestingly, entering his sixth season Smith is seeking his fourth position coach on the line, for the linebackers and in the secondary.

We have two charts to review the comings and goings:

Moves by the offseason

2005 Offseason

Departed (5): OC Terry Shea, OL Pete Hoener, DL Karl Dunbar, DB Vance Bedford, Strength Russ Riederer
Arrived (6): OC Ron Turner, OL Harry Hiestand, DL Don Johnson, DB Perry Fewell, Strength Rusty Jones, Asst. strength Jim Arthur

2006 Offseason

Departed (3): DB Fewell, Asst. special teams Charlie Coiner, Asst. DB Torrian Gray
Arrived (3): DB Steve Wilks, Asst. special teams Kevin O'Dea, Def. QC Gill Byrd

2007 Offseason

Departed (5): DC Ron Rivera, QB Wade Wilson, DL Don Johnson, Asst. OL Harold Goodwin, Off. QC Mike Bajakian
Arrived (5): QB Pep Hamilton, DL Brick Haley, LB Hardy Nickerson, Asst. OL Luke Butkus, Off. QC Charles London

2008 Offseason

Departed (2): LB Nickerson, Asst. special teams O'Dea
Arrived (2): Asst. special teams Chris Tabor, Asst. DL Eric Washington

2009 Offseason

Departed (3): DB Wilks, DL Haley, LB Lloyd Lee
Arrived: ?


Coaching chart

Offensive coordinator

2004 Terry Shea
2005--present Ron Turner

Defensive coordinator

2004-2006 Ron Rivera
2007-present Bob Babich

Special teams coordinator

2004-present Dave Toub

Assistant special teams

2004-05 Charlie Coiner
2006-07 Kevin O'Dea
2008-present Chris Tabor

Offensive line

2004 Pete Hoener
2005-present Harry Hiestand

Assistant offensive line

2004-2006 Harold Goodwin
2007-present Luke Butkus

Running backs

2004-present Tim Spencer

Wide receivers

2004-present Darryl Drake

Assistant wide receivers

2008-present Charles London

Tight ends

2004-present Rob Boras

Quarterbacks

2004-06 Wade Wilson
2007-present Pep Hamilton

Offensive quality control

2004-06 Mike Bajakian
2007 Charles London

Defensive line

2004 Karl Dunbar
2005-06 Don Johnson
2007-08 Brick Haley
Vacant

Assistant defensive line

2008-present Eric Washington

Linebackers

2004-06 Bob Babich (also assistant head coach in 2006)
2007 Hardy Nickerson
2008 Lloyd Lee
Vacant

Defensive backs

2004 Vance Bedford
2005 Perry Fewell
2006-08 Steve Wilks

Assistant defensive backs

2004-05 Torrian Gray
2007-present Gill Byrd

Defensive assistant

2006-07 Lloyd Lee

Defensive quality control

2004-05 Lloyd Lee
2006 Gill Byrd

Strength and conditioning

2004 Russ Riederer
2005-present Rusty Jones

Assistant strength and conditioning

2005-present Jim Arthur

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31 Comments

2008: C

Soon-to-Arrive?:
Ron Marinelli (Asst. Head coach - Defense, D-Line
Joe Barry (LBs).........Marinelli's son-in-law
Mike Barry (Asst. O-Line)....Joe Barry's father
NEW WR coach
NEW Offensive Assistant
NEW QB coach

Soon-to-Depart?:
Like Butkus (asst. O-Line)
Darryl Drake (WR)
Charles London (offenive asst)
Pep Hamilton (QBs)

Quit firing the coaches and get rid of some of these over-paid, out of shape, uninspired players!!!!

I hate to say it but I hope we stink next year then they'll have to get rid of everybody, top to bottom!!!!!!

They need to stop knitpicking these smaller potentially non-influential people and start working on the big names. This is like getting threating by someone to have your head shaved but rather they're singing Oh Susana and plucking your hairs one at a time.

i agree with WinOrGoHome,

as heartbreaking as it is to watch the bears lose, they need to part ways with lovie and angelo before they start to move forward and progress.

this team wins despite the coaching and gm!!!

I think offensive line coach Harry Hiestand, and his assistant, Luke Butkus, nephew of legendary Bears linebacker Dick Butkus, are quickly becoming one of the better line coaches in the league. With a swing tackle on the left side, and a 9yr vet on the right side at both tackle positions, the Bears only allowed 29 sacks. This line also paved the way for a rookie runner to rush for 1200 yds. Hiestand has done a wonderful job on the development of 2nd year guard Josh Beekman, and Im sure he will with tackle Chris Williams going into his second season, and on the practice squad, 2nd year tackle Cody Balogh. I think this line will only get better in 2009 with Chris Williams in the lineup, along with Josh Beekman having one year of starting under his belt, and add big Dan Buenning into the mix, this line might not be half bad next season.

I would still like to see the Bears add another tackle, be it free agency or the draft. Free agent wise, if the Bears really want to make life easier for Hiestand, sign Panthers tackle Jordan Gross, if not, draft one. I know with all the needs on defense right now, the Bears probably wont draft one on day one, but on day three in the third round, I would take Oregon tackle, Fenuki Tupou. This is a pretty deep tackle draft, the Bears could land Tupou in the third. Tupou has nice size at 6-5 332lbs, and could become the road grader at right tackle the Bears have been missing since Big Cat. GO BEARS!!

Still have Babitch on the books. Let's just keep all the crappy coaches and have another mediocre season next year.

My other HUGE concern is "Why is Darryl Drake WR's coach still here?" How Sh$%ty have our receivers been all season? Wow, it just amazes me that the 1 huge glaring hole on offense is at WR and he is still here. Good job JA you sure know how to pick them.

Looks like we will still have:

Drops Davis
Booker I was only good when I played here the first time around
Lloyd no team wants me
Bennett a rookie who is so stupid he can't read the play book

Please get us a receiver...Go BEARS

Dear Kevin,

You always have such nice things to say about a bunch of underachievers. If "Big" dan Buenning was so good why didnt he play? If Chris Williams is so tough why couldn t he beat out John "large bottom" St Clair? I didnt see Matt Forte getting alot of yards between the tackles. I agree get another tackle and a guard somehow. Create some competition. How about another DT and DE? Safety? QB? REciever? oh my gosh....!!!!

Speaking of "ch-ch-ch-changes," it might be time for the Sun-Times to replace columnist Carol Sleaze-ak. That trash she wrote about bringing Vick to the Bears, what was she thinking????

Put aside the unspeakable cruelties he committed, and you're still bringing in an ex-con right out of prison with a history of drug use, spreading STDs, and overall poor character. Yeah, fantastic idea, Carol.

And this was the very same columnist who last year criticized the Bears for drafting Greg Olsen because he participated in a lude rap song. (http://www.getbig.com/boards/index.php?topic=145441.0)

What will Sleaze-ak's next brilliant column be about? Maybe she'll suggest we bring in Matt Jones to help at WR. Or better yet, how about Rae Carruth? Yeah, that'll be perfect. Wait, we also need a RB to spell Forte. Travis Henry sound good?

I know that if the Bears ever did sign Vick, I would never watch another game. Luckily, even though our front office makes a lot of boneheaded decisions, they're at least better than that.

Joe,

Here's another Kevin who wants to talk Bears. You claimed that Forte did not get many yards between the tackles. Yes, they ran counters and other plays to get Forte to the outside. But not all of his yards were to the outside. When they did run Forte in short yardage situations this year it was almost always to the left side behind Beekman and St. Clair. So the answer is yes, yes they ran inside and when they did they had more success on the left side. No RB who runs for over 1k yards does it in just one portion of the field. Otherwise a D would key on that.

As for your other comment about needs elsewhere. I concur. But if we want to acquire a deep threat WR and then use them for that purpose we need in reverse order: 1) a deep threat WR (probably FA); 2) a QB that throws deep (we have one in Grossman but I see few people wanting him back); and 3) most importantly we need OT that can handle speed rushers solo so we don't have to go into max protection schemes to throw a deep pass. Remember a QB can't throw deep passes with their rear on the turf.

So, the firing of the position coaches is the answer? What about Babich? He has made this defense worse! The team that blitzed more than any team in the NFL and we were 22nd in sacks? He cannot call a game on defense. Unfortunately, he is Lovie's Butt Boy and he won't let him go. It reminds me of the Jauron era with Shoop. We all know how that ended up! Lovie is going to make or break with Babich and it looks as if he will follow Jauron out the door too!!!!

I've always had pride in being a Bears fan - as tough as it has been at times. But, I must admit, I don't like what has been happening. I'm considering not renewing my Season tickets. I don't like the team, I don't like the coaches, and I don't like the administration.

Are they blind or what? Angelo has no clue how to draft - not only do "receivers come here to die", but quarterbacks forget how to play once they come to Chicago as well. Simply put, Angelo's track record is not good.

Also, Lovie needs to fire himself as the head coach :) and instead take the position of one of the coaches that he has fired. Actually, fire Babich then take his role.

I want to get back to the days where we had a good defense. Where you could be proud of how they hit people and would take the ball away.

Ahh, I miss those those days. The '85 Bears are still on my mind. Da Bears..

Mike,

I too wondered how Slezak could consider Vick when she trashed Olsen a year ago. The actions of a mid-20 yr old man are far far worse than a college freshman' lewd rap song.

Still both have paid or are paying for their mistakes. I don't think either Vick or Olsen would redo what they did in the past.

Slezak also gave several key conditions and qualifiers for bringing Vick. Look at her writing after the first subhead. If Vick were to reenter the NFL he has several hurdles before we even get to a discussion of joining the Bears. One thing you can say about this NFL Commissioner is he won't allow Vick near a NFL field until he has begun work on repairing his name. And yes, you are right; for many people it will never be repaired.

But if and that if is a huge IF he clears all of those hurdles he still needs to clear hurdles with the Bears. Fitting in with the Bears. Money issues. Where he stands in the QB competition. And more. Clearing these secondary hurdles with the Bears might be his best option within the NFL. He would be in a good place where he can begin his recovery with a strong Christian like Lovie Smith. That is the forgiveness in my heart.

I am not ready to forget what he did. I never will be. But I am ready to forgive him if his future actions show us he is a new man.

I applaud Slezak for taking on this risky issue.

I really get tired of hearing how great Ron Rivera was for the Bears. Doesn't anyone remember his inability to stop Steve Smith in Chicago during the playoffs, even with a half to make adjustments. Also if people are going to mention how the Bears have dropped from 5th to 21st in overall defense since Ron R. left please note that the Chargers under Ron R.rank behind the Bears at 25.

Kevin,

I'd like to echo your optimistic view of our O-line and its coaching staff. Midway through the season, I specifically noticed that Beekman was improving, especially in his ability to move and run block beyond the line of scrimmage.

As far as the comments others have made about Chris Williams and Dan Buenning not starting... its obvious to me that anyone saying these types of things has no clue about how an offensive line works. To plug in new members of a line during the season with 3-4 days of practice will make your Line's performance suffer, not get better.

Plugging Williams into the Goal Line packages, by comparison to a starting tackle position, is a much simpler feat.

The fact is, our starting line played together decently and injury free all year, much better than anyone expected. This offseason is the time to see if Buenning can win a starting guard job, or if the line is better with Williams at tackle and St.Clair (provided he's re-signed) at guard.

If anyone else misses the good ole' Bears like I do just watch this years version of the Baltimore Ravens!! Smashmouth O and killer D.

Oh Kevin, MD Kevin and Naples. There is not a pro scout in football that does not think the Bears needs to upgrade there line. Do you know why they ran behind St. Clair and Beekman? Because Beekman is there most athletic Lineman and that is not saying a lot and St. Clair is more of a RT than a LT and Tait was having problems pushing the pile. As for comments about not putting a guy in the line mid-season. There are very few teams in football that don't do that almost every year. What do you do when a guy gets hurt? Leave it vacant and hope nobody notices. As Buenning the Bucs were not playing him for a reason and Beekman currently holds his position. Do you know how hard it is to crack the Bears line, you could be the worst player in the NFL but if you played there the year before for the Bears you are pretty much cemented into the job. He was a nice guard his first year but has only started 7 games in 3 years and has knee issues. As for Williams, so far he is a major first year bust who has a back that will not get better but worse. I have heard all three of you mention B Lachs back and how it is a problem, well what do you think is Williams problem. He has done nothing for the team in fact it's worse than that, he has eaten up a roster spot and collected a large check for doing nothing. The Bears need a center as Olin is ending his run, a RG, RT, and LT until Williams can prove he can be healthy and then prove he can play. Until then he is a bust. Forte made this line look a lot better than it was. All I have to look at is that Vikings game, can't go a yard.

Kevin you are right about Jordan Gross but do you think the Bears are really going to go after him? Besides Gross is a LT by trade and sense your so high on Williams why would you want Gross who is a true starter and very good player. Maybe if we had drafted Otah to play RT we would have that big grinder you are talking about. Loadholt is also another option this year to play RT if the Bears can draft him. However most people think the Bears will go after defense for most of the draft and try and ride this line into the ground.

MD, you have got to be kidding me with the Vick talk. Now crime wise I hate the guy, I myself have one Pit rescue and one Bull Terrier rescue in my house, so I maybe I am biased. But crime aside, do you really want a QB who scrambles first, makes his recievers look brutal, can't read a D to save his life and is known to be hated in his locker room in Atlanta. In 05 and 06 White had 450-500 yards with Vick. The guy is an athlete but he is no QB. Even I would take Orton over him.

Hadji, I actually do watch Baltimore, I wish the Bears had something like that but you have to be good a drafting, coaching, training, practice. A crazy defense, a punch you in your mouth running game a young cannon armed QB on a 6'6 frame who can run when he needs too and looks great for a real and true first year QB unlike all the Orton fanboys who think this is Ortons first year in the NFL. But hey at least the Bears can look forward to another draft and a longer off season.

Lovie is very excited his Bestest friend in the whole Universe and fellow WB fanboy may come to Chicago with his son-in-law. Yeah favortisim and nepatisim all in one move. Now thats how you run an organization. After all things likethat work on Wall st. and look how good there doing. Can we give Lovie's wife a job too. I hear Lach knows some girls who are ummm dancers and maybe we should bring back cheerleaders to the Bears so they can cheer for the team.

I will crack up if Hot Rod takes the job in Seattle though, that will tell you something about the Bears. He is a good line coach but brining your relatives with you is just pushing it.

My dream move for the Bears this off season would be to fire Angelo and bring in Pioli. Oh wait he's a known winner and Angelo is a true looser, and we know how chicago loves loosers. Well at least the owners and Cubs fans do.

"He would be in a good place where he can begin his recovery with a strong Christian like Lovie Smith. That is the forgiveness in my heart."

Ok, obviously everyone is entitled to their own opinion. But are you smoking dope!? When the hell has Lovie ever been considered a remolder of men? He has ZERO control over his current players as it is!

He couldn't control Benson. Said nothing about Tillman's stupidity. And actually covered up for Briggs' late night bumper cars fiasco.

Oh but that's right. He's a good Christian man. Please, show me exactly where in Christ's teachings he mentions that thou shalt fire all capable employees and replace them with your (incompetent) best buds.

"I applaud Slezak for taking on this risky issue."

All Sleaze-ak did was write a controversial article for the sake of attention. (Say, has Mariotti made any recents stops by the office, Brad?) And the proof is in the publication. She doesn't mention why Vick would make a good QB for the Bears other than he was: "popular" and "exciting." Well gee, if that's all it took to win games we should have been 19-0 the last three seasons with Hester on the roster.

And then to say Vick would be a better prospect than McNabb because of age??? No, she hasn't a clue of what she's talking about. Besides, with the reemergence of guys like Kurt Warner and Kerry Collins, this is the season that definitively proved age has nothing to do with a QBs ability to play well.

Maybe you could applaud her if she wrote a persuasive argument on getting Vick. But she didn't even come close.


Dear Joe,

I'll try and answer your questions a good as I can, but remember, these are just my opinion's on what I think happened.

Question #1: If "Big" Dan Buenning was so good, why didn't he play?
Kevin's answer: Well Joe, probably because he joined the team after they had already established their starting offensive line, by Buenning not getting to Chicago till after the pre-season, he was behind as far as the playbook. Also, the line play hasn't been all that bad this season, there was really no need to mess up the continuity of the line, and anyone who knows anything about offensive line play knows, continuity is key. Also Joe, read what Bear Down in Naples has to say in his blog on January 7, 2009 12:15 p.m. as far as why Buenning or Williams didn't see the field this season to help further answer your question. He pretty much hit the nail on the head with what he had to say.

Question #2: If Chris Williams is so tough why couldn't he beat out John St.Clair?
Kevin's answer: Well Joe, the fact that he had back surgery was a major set back, on top of missing all of pre-season, and being a rookie, are all part of why Chris Williams probably didn't see the field as a rookie. Also, like Buenning, he was behind as far as the play book. And again, like with Buenning, why mess up the continuity with the line, especially with John St.Clair not playing that bad this season. Also, remember Joe, player development, this is key, especially with rookies, not every rookie is NFL ready straight out of college. Especially one coming off back surgery on top of missing all of pre-season.

Joe's opinion: I didn't see Matt Forte getting a lot of yards between the tackles.
Kevin answer: Auh....Joe, like MD Kevin said above, "No runner gets 1200 plus yards running just sweeps, or else a defense would key in on that." Matt Forte did get yards between the tackles, I got 1200 reasons that can guarantee that.

Question #3: How will the Bears get a DT, DE, S, QB, and a receiver?
Kevin's answer: DT, the Bears could either go the free agent route, and sign Albert Haynesworth of Tennessee. Or simply draft one, I say use a 4th round draft pick on Ron Brace of Boston college, at 6-3 330lbs, Brace could be the run stuffer the Bears need at the nose position.
DE, the Bears could sign free agent DE Julius Peppers, but like Haynesworth, this is highly unlikely. I say use a 1st rounder on a defenive end, this is a deep DE class if some of the juniors declare, I would take George Selvie of South Flordia myself.
FS, Chicago should use a 2nd rounder on Alabama safety Rashad Johnson. Johnson's coach Nick Saban said, "Johnson is one of the smartest football players he has every coached, Johnson knows every defense for every formation." Also, as a junior, Johnson had 6ints and 8 pass breakups. This year as a senior, Johnson had 5ints 2 of them pick 6's and 11 pass breakups. This guy is a ballhawk, Chicago needs this at free safety right now, especially running the cover-2.
WR, I say sign a free agent, and Devin Hester will only get better. Draft wise, the Bears will look to the 2008 draft for a receiver, his name is Earl Bennett, I look for Bennett to have a good season as a second year player, again, receivers usually don't contribute right out of college like most defensive players do, I think Bennett is going to surprise some fans.
QB, go to Halas Hall, find a guy named Kyle Orton, thats your man. Orton was having a breakout season before the ankle injury vs Detroit. Before the ankle injury, Orton was putting up around 250 yds a game, along with a bunch of 2 td pass games, on top of the streak of 200 and some attempte without an int. I don"t think its any coincidence Orton's numbers went down after the injury. Also, week 17 vs the Texans Orton had 244yds, 2td passes, and no ints. I think he was getting back on track.

Question #4: Kevin why do you have such nice things to say about the Bears? Joe, you call them a bunch of "underachievers,"....well?
Kevin's answer: As a die hard Bear fan, I LOVE annoying pessimistic Bear fans, because to me, it makes no sense to bash the same guys you will root for on sunday, seems kind of hypocritical, don't ya say?? Don't get me wrong, I'll give a player a hard time if he has a bad game or continues to struggle, but I will not down right bash the player I root for on sundays by saying he "sucks" or is an "underachiever", and comment on the size of a players buttocks, I won't ask on that one?? I say if you root for a team, support its players, because remember, the TEAM is the PLAYERS, thats why I say GO BEARS!!

Creighton wrote as an absolute certainty:
"I have heard all three of you mention B Lachs back and how it is a problem"

Creighton, please point out where I wrote that. You know if you are going to state something as a fact be able to prove it. Two examples: this one and your example in the past week that the Steelers regularly lost the top 50% of the their players every year and how Cowher still won are examples of how it is easy to state an opinion but harder to back it up with facts.

I do not disagree with you that Williams' back is a concern and that the OL needs upgrading. But I have not written here or on any other Bear message board a problem with Urlacher's back.

Creighton:

For the most part I agree with many of your insights and good football knowledge. But I also have to respectfully disagree with you claiming that Williams is a bust because of this injury.

Lets not forget he is a rookie and next year will be his first year actually in contention for the LT position. Lets give him 3 years and then maybe we can call him a bust, but not yet. Lets face it Williams is no Tony Mandarich!!

Packer Backer probably thinks Tony Mandarich was a great player!!

No, Mandarich was one of the biggest jokes in draft history behind Cade McNown, Curtis Enis, Rasham Salam, and last but not least Cedric Benson. I'll take our one goof to your endless amount anyday!!!!

Creighton wrote:
"MD, you have got to be kidding me with the Vick talk. Now crime wise I hate the guy".

My response:
I work with dogs all day long. Love them. Glad to hear you have taken some of these hurt dogs into your home. You obviously have a wonderful heart. And that is my problem with Vick. I can't forget what he did. But if one believes in redemption than maybe it can happen for humans too. But I would want to see action and not just words from him. Again I think Carol Slezak wrote a thought provoking pieces.

Creighton wrote:
"But crime aside, do you really want a QB who scrambles first, makes his recievers look brutal, can't read a D to save his life and is known to be hated in his locker room in Atlanta. In 05 and 06 White had 450-500 yards with Vick. The guy is an athlete but he is no QB. Even I would take Orton over him."

My response:
Considering our discussion on the weaknesses on the OL having someone who is mobile would allow us more options. But yes, he is not a passer first. He is an athlete who lines up behind C. Think wildcat. I believe our QB Coach, Hamilton was this type of QB at Howard University. Could be wrong on this point. Still we might get Vick cheap and maybe there is something there. But and this is a huge BUT, I want to see if the Commish will clear him. I love Goodell. He has said "no" to the crazies. And if he thinks Vick is not ready then I will take his word. I am comfortable that Goodell will not let Vick back into the league if he thinks he will be a PR problem.

But yes, you are correct there are major concerns about his ability to be a passing NFL QB. I am willing to think outside the box. It might work.

Still I will go back to your original point about Vick. His crimes: It has to be more than just "I am sorry". Again, Creighton you must be a good man for two reasons: 1) you love dogs, and 2) you love the Bears.

Creighton wrote:
"Hadji, I actually do watch Baltimore, I wish the Bears had something like that but you have to be good a drafting, coaching, training, practice. A crazy defense, a punch you in your mouth running game a young cannon armed QB on a 6'6 frame who can run when he needs too and looks great for a real and true first year QB unlike all the Orton fanboys who think this is Ortons first year in the NFL. But hey at least the Bears can look forward to another draft and a longer off season."

My response:
Creighton now we are back to disagreeing. I live in MD, hence the name. I even know one of the reporters who covers them. But here is the Ravens record during the same time we have had Lovie Smith: all 45-35, 2 Division titles, a SB appearance and a 2-2 playoff record. The Ravens are 44-36, 1 Division title, 0 SB appearances and a 1-1 playoff record. Their draft is sometimes good and sometimes bad. In the same draft that we traded down from #3 o4 #4 overall for Grossman, Haynes, Gage and Scott. The Ravens gave up a #2 and a future #1 (turned out to be Vince Woffork) to the Pats for QB Kyle Boller. Boller was selected three picks ahead of Grossman. We can go over more of the Ravens draft picks and compare to the Bears and you will find hits and misses for both teams. But to say the Ravens have done better than the Bears when the record does not bare (or should I say "Bear" that out) is akin to looking through a wavy mirror at the fun house. It distorts.

Creighton concluded with:
"My dream move for the Bears this off season would be to fire Angelo and bring in Pioli. Oh wait he's a known winner and Angelo is a true looser, and we know how chicago loves loosers. Well at least the owners and Cubs fans do."

My response:
Why fire Angelo? His record is better than Ravens' GM Newsome over the same time period? You know building a team in real life is different than in Madden football where you can trade, fire, release and otherwise discard players ASAP. A third missed playoffs, esp. if a sub 500 record in 2009, means all bets are off and Lovie's job will be in question. But you can't fire Angelo or Smith when you compare their record to the Ravens. Bears have done better over the past 5 years.

As for "loosers" (sic) I don't support them. I am a Sox fan. ;) But I am not an anti-Cub fan, probably because I live 1k miles away.

Again you are a good man for helping to rescue dogs. We agree that change is needed. We just disagree on the degree of change needed by the Bears.

Marinelli LMAO,WHAT????Yea lets get marinelli so he can whip our defense into shape.You see how he turned the lions defense around into a D that will be apart of history for a long time.Lets bring some of that magic here to chicago.Cause hey marinelli made the 2008 lions apart of history like mike dicka made the 85 bears.with a resume like marinelli its would be crazy for us not to pick him up.

Creighton, no, I don't think the Bears will sign tackle Jordan Gross, I still think they should however, but again, they won't. But Creighton, I do have a question?

Creighton said: "Gross is a LT by trade."

Auh.. no, not necessarily Creighton. Jordan Gross was drafted in 2003, as a rookie he played right tackle. Then in his second season 2004, Gross played left tackle, and struggled. The Panther then moved Gross back to right tackle from 2005 until 2007, one time Gross even said during this span he preferred the right side. This season Gross played left tackle. So out of 6 seasons in the league, Gross spent 4 of them as a Right tackle. Creighton, how does this make Gross a left tackle by trade, especially with him playing on the right side for most of his career???

I would just like to see the Bears sign Gross and put him at right tackle, a position he likes to play. If Chris Williams was to struggle, which I don't think he will, the Bears could alway move Gross back to the left side. Chris Williams will be a good left tackle with his athleticism, and with Gross manning the right side, the Bears would have a nice set of bookend tackles for awhile.

Lastly, Creighton, there was no need to put Buenning or Williams in the starting lineup this season, the Bears line wasn't that bad, and the Bears were in the playoff hunt for most of the season, with the line not playing that bad, why mess up the continuity. Im sure if there was an injury, Buenning or Williams could have come in. Also Creighton, I disagree with you saying, "Olin Kreutz is ending his run." Kreutz isn't an all-pro anymore, but he is still a good center, and good centers are hard to come by. Kreutz is a 12 yr vet next season, the Bears still have him signed for one season after that, 2010. Most centers can go for a long time, take Titans center Kevin Mawae, this guy is a 15 yr vet and is still playing some good football. If you notice, a lot of teams get a good center, and play them for 12 yrs plus, theres no reason not to think Kreutz couldn't do the same. Creighton, Williams bad back was just bad luck, some players can go an entire career with a herniated disc in their back, some have. Chris Williams acted up, it was just plain bad luck. The good out of all of this is, the Bears caught it while Williams was a young man, by the way, [thats the difference between Williams and Urlacher, AGE]. There have been a lot of players who have come back from a herniated back and went on to play for a long time, I think Chris Williams will be fine GO BEARS!!

MD you mean your not a doctor??? Yeah I kinda figured you were from there. Are you kidding me with comparing the Bears and Reavens. Angelo is brutal, he has not drafted a pro bowl player in what4-5 years? MD you were the same guy that said Okowo and Buzain were going to be studs this year. Do you remember you told me that. This isn't the Forbes 2007 GM list. The last two years this team has been 500. The Reavens have had one of the best defenses in football for 10 years, the Bears managed to do that for 2 before droping to the bottom third. There offensive line is better than ours, there QB is better than ours, there recievers are better, there defense is way better, Ed Reed sure looks good can we get one of those? Buy the way this year isn't over yet for the Reavens is it? So we are going to have to wait and see about those playoff numbers.

Tell me about all these Pro Bowlers that Angelo has drafted. Harris, injury prone(classic Angelo) Briggs best player on defense now, Vasher can't even get on the field, Dude no guy who thinks Okowo or Buzain were going to be studs this year is going to make a comment to me about being a Madden GM. 3 out of five years they have missed the playoffs, and Lovie had two wins in the playoffs in 5 years thanks to Ron Rivera. But thats it. Rivera goes and the defense leaves. Lovie wanted him gone but it's Angelo's call and he made the wrong call again.

You can't blame just Lovie for the draft picks and problems on this team. Angelo was VP of player personel in Tampa and for ten years under him the Bucs had ten loosing seasons in a row. Not until the new owners and Dungy did that team start winning. You know who has a ring? Glazer has a ring, Dungy has a ring, but Angelo has no ring what a shock. You know who else has a ring the Reavens and there looking to make it 2. Who has Angelo drafted who is so great?

Didn't Angelo say it takes five years to build a team? Yes he did. Well the Reavens are better than the Bears in year 5. So I guess they did a better job. Not to mention they play in the AFC East, just a bit tuffer than the NFC north. But I guess will find out next year who is better. Your not going to tell the Bears have been better than Pitt, and New England are you. Dude I know you know who Pioli is and your saying you wouldn't want this guy as your GM over Angelo?

Anyway this is what Angelo gave you with 5 years of him running the draft. A mediocre team with one Pro bowl player a 26th ranked offense and a 21st ranked defense. I do not agree Lovie is the main problem him and Angelo are tied for suck. Angelo is not a good evaluater of talent. Plus how about all those contracts this off season? They don't look to good right now. Or even giving Lovie all that power he has now. Angelo can't even fire him if he wants too. Plus now Lovie has a ton of say about the draft. He let Lovie hand pick all these assistants that are being fired. Just exactly what have either of them done a good job at? Cause Right now Rivera looks like the man and Lovie and Angelo look like a pair of chumps.

How did Angelo feel about Singletary? Oh yeah not good enough to even be interviewed for the DC job. I guess thats looking pretty stupid as well.

You know what everyone says about Angelo and Lovie "well what about 2006." I'll tell you what Rivera, a new QB who took about 7 weeks for teams to get enough film on to shut down, the NFC north was a joke and so was the NFC, are you kidding me the Saints and Seattle in the playoffs at home. What have either team done sense. In fact all three teams have been bad to mediocre. That tells you a lot about that year right there. It tells you the Bears peaked when half the team where Hatley hold overs. Who was the Best player on the bears in 2006? Urlacher was, who was the best guy on offense? Jones? Who did Angelo draft to replace Jones? Benson? Huge mistake. The guy is a patch work artist he finds stop gaps like Garza. His Oline is made up of one of his draft picks thats it. Thats all he could find in 5 years of looking. Forte is his best pick by far but for me it's to little to late. Way way way to little. You know how sad this town is? We are happy with a 26th ranked offense. You know how sad that is? He has been looking for a DE sense he got here? Still looking. Still looking for saftie help. Brown(Hatley) was our Best Saftie and Angelo has yet to draft a replacment or a guy to compliment him. Tillman is way over rated, Vasher had one good season got paid and "he gone!" How about Orton, who did Orton thank for his development. He thanked Griese he looks a lot like. Orton is the Best Angelo could do at the QB spot in 5 years. The guy already stated he does not think the Bears need a reciever. Are you kidding me? Now maybe it's not Angelo's fault maybe it's the fault of the scouts and the position coaches. Oh wait he hires them, so thats on him too. It's his job to build this team and this is want he has given you and I guess your happy with it. Thanks but no thanks. I like winners. The guy is actually looking at hiring Rod's son in law because he is Rods son in law. That is not how you build a team.

What has he done that is so great too you? The guy is a joke and him and Lovie have there jobs on the line next year and I can't wait till the hammer drops on both of them, then maybe we can build a real winner in this town. I can't believe you would say this years Bears are better than the Reavens.

Reavens have the number four Rush offense, are 11th in points and have the number 2 ranked defense in football and you think the Bears are better? Were are they not better than the Bears? You said in 5 years well this is year five pal, and Baltimore is in the playoff's and already has a win. The Bears are at home in bed sleeping.

Getting a good coaching staff? This is easy. Let's see....

D-coordinator: Mike Nolan
D-line coach : Rod Marinelli
Linebackers : Bob Babich
Secondary : Mike Brown (maybe he will be the future D-coordinator)

This would make a lot of sense, but this is a miracle if this works out. But the right thing to do is above.

I just think Mike Brown would make a good coach of some kind. He is passionate and emotional. He could motivate guys. He possesses that motivating factor the likes of which cannot be taught.

Hope this happens.

Go Bears!

The Bears totally sucked this year. No one knows what Buenning or Williams will will not do, that is total speculation, at least we have them, but the Bears as a team gave up, Owners/Coaches/Players all gave up. Anyone that watched all the breakdowns knows this. If anyone really enjoyed watching the Bears this year, then you will not mind losing most years. I for one will not applaud mediocrity. That is the goal isn't it? To win? or at least try to win? That was the problem with the Bears - they didn't even seem to be trying. That is what hurt.

Dropped Passes
Missed blocks
4 downs to No Goal
No Sacks
Missed TD throws to Hester
No attitude
Embarrasing linebacker, Dline, Dends, Dbacks, DCoaches play (hmm ok entire D)
Hester looking like a lost child on returns

I can feel good backing the Bears if they at least try to win, but 37-3???? Give me a break! and The pack isn't even good!
Optimism is one thing but giving up is another.
Forte was the only bright spot. Beekman is promising.

No one knows what will happen next year, We know what happened this year though.
The organization as a whole let the fans down, but go ahead and pay them ALL big bucks to give up, I BET if you gave up on your job it would be your a..! I know every day I have to bust my butt, why didn't the Bears? Thats their job isn't it?

A team that trys does not do these things to a hated rival.....

Bears vs Packers Notes:

The Packers' defense, which struggled to stop the run all season and suddenly had to account for the absence of middle linebacker Nick Barnett, out for the season with a knee injury contained Bears rookie running back Matt Forte, who rushed for 64 yards and added 40 yards receiving.
THE PACKERS GAVE UP AVG RUSH 131 YDS PER GAME ON THE YEAR!!

Orton was 13-of-26 for 133 yards, completing only two passes to a wide receiver

"They ran it, they threw it," Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher said. "They did whatever they wanted to do."

Guy's the Packers didn't even make the playoffs!!!
They avg 26 pts per game - we gave them 37!
They avg 112 rush yds per game - We gave them 200 rush yards, and we supposedly have a good Rush D?
Why did I pick this one game? Because teams that try do not have games like this!

And scr@w u packerbacker if you had a team (or an interesting team blog) I wouldn't use your pathetic team as an example
And there were people wondering if we would beat the Lions!
Its about Attitude and Respect and Trying!!

Creighton wrote:
"Are you kidding me with comparing the Bears and Reavens. Angelo is brutal, he has not drafted a pro bowl player in what4-5 years?"

My response:
Sure, if you ignore Devin Hester. It goes to what Mark Twain said there are lies, damn lies and then there are statistics.

Creighton falsely wrote:
"MD you were the same guy that said Okowo and Buzain were going to be studs this year. Do you remember you told me that."

My response:
Never said that. Go back and find it. If you find my words saying that I will come to your house and kiss your rear end. If you can't find it then you can retract. This is now the third time you have claimed something that is false in less than a week. Yesterday, you said that I made claims that about Urlacher's back being a problem during the pre-season. Never did. And then your best one was when you claimed that Cowher won in Pittsburgh while losing his top 50% of his players every year. You know we can have a discussion of the Bears anytime. And you can claim false facts as much as you want. But please don't claim I said something I never did when trying to make you point.

Creighton wrote:
"The Reavens (sic) have had one of the best defenses in football for 10 years, the Bears managed to do that for 2 before droping (sic) to the bottom third. There offensive line is better than ours, there QB is better than ours, there recievers (sic) are better, there defense is way better, Ed Reed sure looks good can we get one of those? Buy the way this year isn't over yet for the Reavens (sic) is it? So we are going to have to wait and see about those playoff numbers.

My response:
Try spell checking. It will make you sound literate. Your fourth grade English teacher must be fainting from the obvious typos.

You might be right about how their position players are better than ours. But it still does not change the fact that the Bears has one more victory over the past 5 years than the Ravens (note the correct spelling; I did but looking at their web site first). Also the Ravens have one less Divisional championship than the Bears over the past 5 years; and they have one less playoff victory.

Creighton wrote:
"3 out of five years they have missed the playoffs, and Lovie had two wins in the playoffs in 5 years thanks to Ron Rivera. But thats it. Rivera goes and the defense leaves. Lovie wanted him gone but it's Angelo's call and he made the wrong call again."

My response:
I would have liked Rivera to stay. But what you and many others fail to acknowledge is that 2005 playoff game against the Panthers is how our D was killed by Rivera's play calling. I seem to remember Steven Smith running all over the field. Many people on these Bears boards wanted Rivera's head on a plate after that game. I didn't. Did you?

Creighton wrote factually incorrect again:
"Glazer has a ring, Dungy has a ring, but Angelo has no ring what a shock. You know who else has a ring the Reavens and there looking to make it 2. Who has Angelo drafted who is so great?"

My response:
Angelo has a ring. Got it with the Giants in the 1980's pre-Tampa. Who has Angelo drafted?; Let me see -- Harris, Brown (Alex), Briggs, Olsen, Hester, Forte, Tillman, Graham, Payne, Harrison and Beekman. He also found: Gould, Clark, Maynard. He found Thomas Jones on the FA market. Has Angelo missed on draft picks and on trades? Sure. All GMs do.


Creighton wrote:
"Well the Reavens are better than the Bears in year 5. So I guess they did a better job. Not to mention they play in the AFC East, just a bit tuffer than the NFC north."

My response:
Ravens, note the spelling, play in the AFC North not the AFC East. Try reading the headings under the standings as a cheat sheet.

Creighton started out this sentence grammatical incorrect by saying:
"Your not going to tell the Bears have been better than Pitt, and New England are you. Dude I know you know who Pioli is and your saying you wouldn't want this guy as your GM over Angelo?"

My response:
Dude, no I am not saying that we are better than the Steelers or the Patriots. They have done better than us. Pioli would be interesting. But if you throw out Angelo when his record is equal to or better than the Ravens' (note the correct spelling) GM Newsome that you love you face the problem of lack of continuity. Living in Redskin land, Owner Synder has done that with his head coaches. Redskins have not won much in 10 years.

Is Angelo safe? No. Are there GMs better than Angelo? Sure. Is Angelo the worst GM in the league? Not even close.

Will you get Pioli here? If you close your eyes and dream dream dream it will come true, much like any child's wish.

Creighton wrote:
"Or even giving Lovie all that power he has now. Angelo can't even fire him if he wants too. Plus now Lovie has a ton of say about the draft."

My response:
If Lovie fails to make the playoffs in 2009 and especially if it is a sub 500 team then he will have more to worry about that keeping Babich. His own job will be on the line.

Creighton wrote:
"He let Lovie hand pick all these assistants that are being fired."

My response:
News flash, you want your head coach to select his staff.

Creighton wrote another key and insightful and grammatically incorrect comment:
"...the NFC north was a joke and so was the NFC, are you kidding me the Saints and Seattle in the playoffs at home. What have either team done sense."

My response:
I think you mean "since".

Creighton wrote:
"In fact all three teams have been bad to mediocre. That tells you a lot about that year right there. It tells you the Bears peaked when half the team where Hatley hold overs. Who was the Best player on the bears in 2006? Urlacher was, who was the best guy on offense? Jones?"

My response:
Look it up: Thomas Jones was a FA signing of Angelo. Yes, Hadley (note the correct spelling of his name) drafted Urlacher and Mike Brown and Olin Kreutz. He also drafted David Terrell. So Hadley had misses too.

As for half of the Bears on the SB team being Hadley (note the correct spelling). Answer: wrong. You know your arguments would be a lot stronger if you backed them up with facts that are true. (Just a suggestion.)

The rest of your comments are rehashes of previous stuff. For the best of Creighton please search this board. Look for the typos and over-the-top statements that are false.

I believe changes are needed. I believe Babich should go. But if Lovie keeps him and as HC he can then if the D fails next year it will be Lovie who should go along with Babich. There are holes in the Bears on both sides of the ball, but a few key FAs and some good drafting should go a long way. I am not predicting SB but not making the playoffs in 2009 will be unacceptable.

ahhh...YOU mdkevin are teh one who is wrong! i am ALWAYS RIGHT (man i am awlays right) ans i only give facts!

ans the joke is on you becsue i never mad it to forth grade!

I think it is funny. I believe all these coaching changes is sorta unreal. I think it is time to have Babich gone once in for all. It doesn't matter what coach you bring in but if you can't devolp your own players then what does that say about your abilty to coach or lead a team it doesn't it sends a different message or story. Why is that this organization let go RB Jones and he took off with the Jets and is doing awesome. I was a big Thomas Jones fan when he came to chicago and the bears swept him under the rug for a player who was worthless benson but why we let all these players go and there carrers take off somewhere else i think it sends a message when other players who come to chicago and they write them off go somewhere else and there flourish into something great says something about bears organization and there ability to euvaluate talent that says alot. I have alot of respect for Larry Mayer who writes for the chicago bears but the fact is that you see what everyone else see's and etc but I am willing to bet that the bears organization doesnt give you the full regins to write it as you see fit cause if you did have complete control you would write it as everyone see it not sugar coat to the aproval of the bears organization. Well look at the Patriots this year they had an 11-5 yr this yr and they still missed the payoffs and yes they had a winning season but when you miss the playoffs year after year and you say where close when our defense gave up 455 yards in the season finale to houston wow that blows my mind as long as every bear supporter and when babichs scheme which was the cover 2 and it didnt work he blitz all the time and what did that pay as divends it didnt except letting other offenses score and get yardage on our defense it would be different if we were getting sacks and such but we wasn't. We do have alot of talent on both sides of the football but when Offensive or Defenisve cordinators fail to get the job done they must be accountable so are we to say that the reason the bears defense played so poorly this year is all the postion coaches fault i find that hard to believe that and I bet every defensive player on the bears have no respect for babich because the man can't even call a play or to make adjustments at that half except saying if our cover 2 don't work we will blitz that will surely get results not

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This page contains a single entry by Brad Biggs published on January 7, 2009 8:30 AM.

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