4 downs: GM Emery needs to speak up
By Brad Biggs, Chicago Tribune reporter
8:59 p.m. CST, December 30, 2012
GM needs to speak up
General manager Phil Emery spoke publicly the day training camp opened and during the off-week when the Bears had a shiny 4-1 record. Now, when times are not so full of optimism, Emery must speak again. He has to share not only his evaluation of what went right – the first half of the season – and what went wrong – the rest of it. He also has to map out his plan for the future and how it involves Lovie Smith, a coach coming off a 10-win season, or how it will be shaped by a newcomer.
The most maddening element of Smith's tenure has been the offense's inability to improve. On his fourth offensive coordinator, Mike Tice, the team watched Brandon Marshall set team records and do little else. Tice has been a convenient target for critics throughout the collapse, but if Mike Martz, Ron Turner and the regrettably hired Terry Shea were the problem too, what does that say? The personnel on offense lacks the firepower to compete with the Packers.
Cutler worthy of extension?
Jay Cutler said during the season that he would wait until the offseason to address his contract situation. His deal expires at the end of the 2013 season and it's worth wondering if the Bears are willing to wait longer than him. It would be difficult to pick out a game this season the Bears won because of the quarterback. His best games are paired up with strong defensive gems. With his favorite target Marshall on board, he posted an 81.3 passer rating and completed only 58.8 percent of his passes. It's fair to say — to this point — he's far from the savior the team thought it was getting in 2009.
Urlacher's future cloudy
On a knee that limited his range, Brian Urlacher was in the mix for the team lead in tackles when a hamstring injury ended his season after 12 games. The contract that paid him $8 million this season expires and no one knows if the middle linebacker will be back. He turns 35 in May and has been a fixture for 13 seasons. Many believe his future is tied to Smith, but key questions need to be answered. How much would Urlacher be worth? And if he isn't coming back, how can the position be upgraded?
Not much to disagree with here. And he's not saying get rid of Cutler, he's saying don't give him an extension. I have to agree though, he was brought in to upgrade the O, and while he has done that, not to the extent the Bears thought he would. And yes there are a lot of things that go into that, which are out of Cutlers control, but the team thought they were getting a guy that could overcome those issues in a way the previous guys couldn't, and he hasn't(fair or unfair), and I think we all did also when he first came.
Emery should fire the entire staff , cut all of the dead weight players , trade (for picks ) some of the old ones , and make the statement that no one's job is safe . No one , and that especially includes anyone who thinks his NAME is too important .
And if that miffs some guys who don't want a new HC and don't want to learn a new system - then they can go learn a new system on another team .
BLOW THIS TEAM UP . It's like old rotted wood .
it's not old rotted wood, it's more like an old boat where rot has started to set in...to save it you have to tear out the rot completley and put in new pieces of good wood.
Yep . This team needs to be rebuilt whether some want to admit it or not .
Originally Posted by Riczaj01
I think a rebuild is what is needed. The effect can be lessened with a better tactical HC and the moorings that we do possess. I believe it's a quicker rebuild/turnaround than say the Chiefs. The quicker a new culture/discipline can be installed the easier the transition. I don't think it'll take a rocket scientist to use the O more effectively.
There.....it's been said and said correctly shorty! Lovies biggest shortcoming is that he simply does not adjust well on the fly and that is what tactical skills are all about. We've watched far too many game in which he's been hopelessly out coached and even in games like today we see his stubborn insistence on staying with his strategic plan of a turnover based "soft zone" defense even when the other team begins to pick it apart.
Originally Posted by short faced bear
As with at least half our wins this season once you take away those turnovers we lose the game because the offense has problems both with scoring even when they're handed gifts as they were today AND holding onto the ball in order to keep the other guys scoring opportunities at a minimum. Where are the adjustments needed. We squeaked out a win today only because the clock ran out. One more Lions possession and we lose.
What irks me is that this team was a lot closer to being a 6-10 team overall by the way they played than the 10-6 they are. If not for a year of being one of the most opportunistic defenses scoring wise in the history on the NFL there is no way we would have won 10 games. So when people start throwing out crap like "you can't fire a coach who went 10-6" I say Lovie didn't go 10-6. His defense bailed his ass out of at least 4 or 5 of those games that would have been lost without the turnovers and defensive scores. Does anyone think THAT'S gonna be repeated?
This is the kind of fine pencil, hard line analysis that Phil Emery needs to be doing or to have done already. Do we actually keep a HC whose team probably lucked into a 10-6 season based off of no better than 8-8 play and I could still make and argument for 6-10 play. On top of that after reaching mid point with a 7-1 record and a two game lead in the NFCN he still couldn't keep his team from folding like a sad sack of shit again this year despite the fact that he had two starting caliber NFL QBs and an All Pro WR and RB on his offense!
I'm sorry but I'm not buying into that old key injuries excuse anymore. He's gotten to ride that pony too many times before. Good HCs and good teams fight through those injuries, battle out wins, and make the playoffs with at least an even chance of winning a game or two. Who really gives a shit whether we made the playoffs or not. Were ya'all up for another ass kicking in SF? You know that's all that would have happened. We'd have gotten embarrassed on national TV again!
Lovie may be one hell of a guy and one of the most well liked and popular HCs in the NFL but he's not getting his job done because HIS coaches aren't getting their job done but he hired them and he seems reluctant to replace them when they fail him. If there is no way to completely severe Lovie from the offensive side of the football and replace those on that staff who need to go then Emery has no choice. Lovie has to go.
Bears fans are waiting for an answer on this and if Emery is gonna retain whatever credibility he's garnered so far his answer has to be sure and swift. Either he gets behind Lovie and they jointly begin those changes that must be made or he expresses his regrets and deep gratitude for what Lovie has done during his nine years as the Bears HC but says it's time to move on. If we're getting new coaching at any level including HC that work needs to begin NOW.
Okay, list the deadweight players. Who would you trade and what pick compensation would you take?
Originally Posted by Alf The Ref
Bears won't get much for anyone on their roster. Not even Cutler who would not fetch near what we paid for him.
Allot of players careers that fit lovie system is effected by his retention of firing not just cutler and lach. If we switch to a 3-4 does Melton belong? Do we cut peppers with a 3-4 move? Can our db survive outside lovie system? Stay tuned. It's definitely time for change and doubt it happens. But if it does this team can look very very different next season
They were talking about this the other day, Pepper's cap number is $10M if he is cut, because all that bonus money gets rushed up. I think they said his salary if not cut is $16M. Is it worth saving $6M to cut him? I don't think so.
Originally Posted by motownbear
Hopefully, the Bears will be thoughtful about this, and not overreact like us fans do. We have a lot of solid players to build around. We have a lot of younger players who are going to help Emery build a Super Bowl team.
Be thoughtful. Build that offensive line first. Go from there on offense. Add a TE who can catch a football. Maybe get a replacement for Hester (at WR). On defense we have to replace aging players, but it won't happen in one off season. It's at least a two year project. But that doesn't mean we can't be competitive in 2013 as we replace these players.
I'm hopeful, and not thinking we're screwed in 2013. Get a HC who has a clue. Fix the oline. Upgrade some key positions of need. Prosper.