Ryan Pace is in his sixth season with the Chicago Bears. All things considered, he is a divisive figure among fans. Many love him for the work he’s done at restoring the team from the cesspool of misery it was coming out of 2014. He built one of the best defenses in the NFL and fostered a team culture that is among the strongest out there.
At the same time, there is no hiding from his mistakes. His colossal misfire on Mitch Trubisky in the 2017 draft, bypassing Patrick Mahomes in the process, is a fireable offense by itself to many. To say nothing of his other blunders like Kevin White, Adam Shaheen, Mike Glennon, and Trey Burton among others. Not to mention the hiring of Matt Nagy who is proving less of an offensive guru with each passing week.
Now here the Bears are.
Pretty much right back where they were in the 2000s. Too talented to be outright bad but not good enough to be a true contender. All because they still can’t get the quarterback position right. Pace has taken three notable cracks at it since he took over. Each has disappointed to varying degrees. At what point is enough going to be enough?
Former GM Michael Lombardi is never shy about throwing his opinions around. Like or hate him though, the man is well-connected around the league. Mully & Haugh of 670 The Score had him on their show recently and asked a simple question. What fate awaits Pace if the Bears fail to crack the playoffs.
“I think everybody thinks Pace is safe. The word around the league is he’s endeared himself to the family and I don’t think there’s any doubt that he’ll be back.”
A lot can change for Ryan Pace in the next month
There is no doubt that Pace has made a positive impression on the McCaskey family. He’s done so much to elevate the overall profile of the organization since taking over. Especially the renovations of Halas Hall, which is now viewed as one of the best in the NFL. They clearly trust him and his vision for where he wants this team to go. Still, football is a results-based business. Pace hasn’t gotten them.
The Bears have one winning season during his tenure as GM. That doesn’t figure to change this year. After starting 5-1, the team has lost four straight and is in a clear freefall. Most of that due to one of the worst offenses most have ever seen. An offense that is almost entirely built by Ryan Pace himself. Unless that problem is somehow fixed and they can rally to a few victories down the stretch, it will be no playoffs in five of six seasons for him.
George McCaskey made it clear winning was his expectation this year.
It’s difficult to believe he’d given Pace another chance in 2021 after watching the team collapse so spectacularly this year. Then again with the realities of a financial squeeze from COVID-19, Bears ownership might not want to fork out additional cash replacing both him and Matt Nagy. Lombardi is only reporting what he’s heard and the reality is McCaskey is a man who governs by emotion.
It’s already been revealed the team chairman is angry with the state of the team. Enough to where there is genuine speculation changes are coming. If the losing continues, it would take one hell of a sale pitch by Pace to save his job.