Wednesday, August 10, 2022

A Very Exciting Trend Is Emerging With Chicago Bears GM Candidates

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General managers have so many responsibilities when it comes to running a football franchise. Acquiring players for a roster is the biggest of course, but it goes beyond that. For the Chicago Bears, the GM runs the entirety of the football operations. Every football-related decision goes through him. It isn’t just about building a roster. It is about fostering a culture. Getting everybody inside that building to pull in the same direction. Towards a championship. Ryan Pace had seven years to get it right. He failed.



While most will point to his selection of Mitch Trubisky in 2017 and hiring of Matt Nagy the next year as his two biggest missteps, there is one other issue the man never got enough flak for. His disappointing construction of the offensive line. In his entire tenure, the Bears’ front five allowed fewer than 30 sacks in a season just one time. During the 2021 season, it allowed 58. A fitting number to go out on.

Justin Fields took 36 of them. If this team is ever going to get their young quarterback pointed in the right direction, one would think they’d need somebody who can identify guys that can block for him. This is where their growing list of GM candidates gets pretty exciting. If one were to dig beneath the surface, it wouldn’t take long to realize that almost every notable name the Bears plan to meet with has one thing in common. Strong track records for finding really good linemen.

Ed Dodds (Colts assistant GM)
  • Max Unger
  • Russell Okung
  • Quentin Nelson
  • Braden Smith

Rick Smith (former Texans GM)
  • Chris Myers
  • Duane Brown
  • Brandon Brooks
  • Ben Jones
  • Eric Winston
Jeff Ireland (Saints assistant GM)
  • Leonard Davis
  • Jake Long
  • Mike Pouncey
  • Richie Incognito
  • Andrus Peat
  • Ryan Ramczyk

Joe Schoen (Bills assistant GM)
  • Jake Long
  • Mike Pouncey
  • Billy Turner
  • Laremy Tunsil
  • Wyatt Teller
  • Mitch Morse
Eliot Wolf (Patriots senior personnel executive)
  • Josh Sitton
  • T.J. Lang
  • Bryan Bulaga
  • David Bakhtiari
  • Corey Linsley
  • Wyatt Teller

Chicago Bears are talking to the right people it seems

When looking at franchise history, the last time the Bears had a GM that drafted offensive linemen well, it was Jim Finks. So it’s been a long time since they had somebody capable of at least providing protection for the quarterback. Even if they couldn’t really secure the quarterback himself. The great thing about having Bill Polian help lead the search for this team is he understands how vital this part of the job will be. So it seems he is pointing the organization towards several candidates that can do this.

Polian successfully built around quarterbacks in Buffalo, Carolina, and Indianapolis. He routinely found quality offensive linemen along the way. This is why McCaskey leaning on him was a sound decision despite his age. The Chicago Bears fans wanted somebody with deep football knowledge leading the search. Well, they got it. Based on the data available, their list of candidates is not only experienced but feature track records that come with an understanding of how to build around a quarterback.

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