SAN FRANCISCO--I covered some of the personnel issues facing the Bears this morning in the print and online edition of the paper, specifically looking at the help that has been brought in via the draft over the last five years.
The Bears are one of only 10 franchises to not draft a Pro Bowl position player since 2005.
Only three of those teams--Cincinnati, Pittsburgh and Arizona--have records above .500 at this point, although I am not sure if there is a direct parallel. After all, the Steelers have won two of the last four Super Bowls, and they've done so with a bevy of talent on both sides of the ball. Certainly some of the other teams on this list have become perennial losers--the Chiefs, Raiders, Redskins, Lions and Rams all have serious roster issues. The Bears, I think it's fair to say, fall somewhere in between.
The interesting thing is general manager Jerry Angelo could add a Pro Bowl player to his list over the last five years this season. Cedric Benson could make the AFC Pro Bowl team if his second half in Cincinnati mirrors the first half. Let's look at the starters from the last five drafts and significant contributors:
Significant contributors: None
Starters: WR Devin Hester, FS Danieal Manning
Significant contributors: DE Mark Anderson
Starters: TE Greg Olsen, LG Josh Beekman
Significant contributors: S Kevin Payne
Starters: RT Chris Williams, RB Matt Forte, WR Earl Bennett, DT Marcus Harrison, CB Zack Bowman
Significant contributors: TE Kellen Davis
Starters: SS Al Afalava
Significant contributors: WR Johnny Knox