If the Bears make the playoffs, Lovie should be given an extension
LINK to the article Fact or Fiction: If the Bears make the playoffs, Lovie should be given an extension.Jeff Dickerson: Fiction: Smith deserves a contract extension only if Bears' ownership and general manager Phil Emery believe he can win the franchise a Super Bowl. That's it. There's no middle ground. Maybe the Bears truly think Smith is the guy to lead the organization to a championship. If so, then it's their right to award him an extension. If not, the Bears need to go in another direction. It's their call. The Bears have had nine years to evaluate Smith, so to base his future on the outcome of two games against sub-par competition would be unfair. Either commit to him, or don't. All I can say is the Bears better make the right call, or we'll be having this conversation again in a couple of years.
Michael C. Wright: Fiction. Making the postseason isn't good enough. But at the same time, surely general manager Phil Emery will realize that Smith wasn't blessed this season with the best in terms of overall talent on offense. Despite all that's been said, the team's struggles this season didn't come as a result of bad coaching. While it would save the Bears a lot of grief by avoiding putting Smith into a lame-duck situation, giving the coach an extension wouldn't necessarily be the best move for the team. The scenario I envision is Emery working feverishly to upgrade the talent on offense (especially the offensive line) and depth on defense this offseason, and making Smith go into the final season of his contract with something to prove. Smith is a confident enough coach to handle such a situation. Halfway through the season, if Smith's team is producing, you give him the extension then. Smith knows his pedigree as a coach, and likely wouldn't have a problem being thrust into that type of situation.
Scott Powers: Fiction. If the Bears reach the Super Bowl, we can talk about an extension. Anything less than that, and Smith should fear for his job. The Bears have reached the playoffs in three of Smith's first eight seasons and have gone 3-3 in the playoffs in those years. That's not satisfactory. Even if they limp into the playoffs this season, that shouldn't be deemed a success. The Bears' failures haven't all been Smith's fault, but it's his turn to take the fall. Unless the Bears make some miraculous run in the playoffs in the coming weeks, it's time for the Bears to part ways with Smith.
Jon Greenberg: Fiction. Making the playoffs isn't enough for this team. It's tough for me to say a coach should be fired after making the playoffs, but the expectations for this team, for better or worse, were greater than just getting in. Now one win, while not that much more impressive, would probably be enough to get Smith two more years tacked onto the one he has left. Smith should get an extension if Phil Emery is confident he is the man to lead this team in the future. I don't know what Emery's vision for the future is, but unless he thinks he can find the right offensive leadership for Lovie, I don't see how Smith gets an extension without winning one playoff game.