Sunday, April 21, 2024

Ryan Poles Took A Slight Dig At Ryan Pace In New Interview


It was clear from the outset that Ryan Poles has little respect for what his predecessor Ryan Pace had built as Chicago Bears GM over the past several years. While many felt the team was maybe a few players away from playoff contention, Poles saw an aging, overpriced roster spinning its wheels. They were nowhere close to competing for a Super Bowl. So with the blessing of George McCaskey and ownership, he tore everything down. Veteran players like Khalil Mack, Akiem Hicks, Eddie Goldman, Robert Quinn, and James Daniels were shown the door. Poles intended to build the team his way.

Since then, the GM hasn’t made any comments that could be considered disparaging of Pace. That isn’t who Poles is. By all accounts, he’s a classy guy who is well-liked by almost everybody. However, he did let a little of his displeasure show in a recent interview with Albert Breer of the MMQB. When discussing his decision to trade the #1 overall pick to Carolina, he admitted that one of the primary driving forces was trying to recover from several of the poor decisions made by Pace.

“After doing the research with my analytics group, I really wanted it to be a situation where this helps us now, but also helps us down the road,” Poles says. “Obviously, adding uptick in 2023 was critical, but I also want premium picks, or what could be premium picks in ’24 and ’25, just to continue to add draft capital down the road. That was important, again, just to continue to make up for some of the trades that the organization did before, to try to find a quarterback and continue to add good players in this draft.”

Ryan Poles’ philosophy flies in contrast to Pace.

One of the main criticisms of the former Bears GM was his aggressive mentality. He habitually took big swings on trades every year, freely giving away future draft capital in the attempts. Between 2015 and 2021, Pace gave up a future 1st, 2nd, or 3rd round pick no fewer than five times. Some of those picks became players like Alvin Kamara, Fred Warner, Mecole Hardman, Josh Jacobs, Evan Neal, and Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah. Only two of the five players Pace traded for remain on the roster.

That is not a sustainable way of team-building in Ryan Poles’ eyes. Being aggressive isn’t bad, but only if it’s done in moderation. Competent teams curb their free agent spending and focus on drafting and developing their own players. If a trade opportunity comes up that fits the vision, then do it. That is why Poles works tirelessly to stockpile picks. He finished with 11 in 2022. Now he has ten in 2023. That is more than Pace had in his first three drafts combined. Recklessness will not be the buzzword for this new regime.

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Thomas Gena
Thomas Gena
Mar 21, 2023 9:51 am

Bear Downs —

All that might be true. But it’s the GM (much like the U.S. President) that “owns” the good and the bad, that happens on his watch.

Thomas Gena
Thomas Gena
Mar 21, 2023 9:48 am

Random comment —

100% correct!

Matt Nagy was awful! And Ryan Pace’s fatal flaw was that he (Pace) believed in Nagy, completely.

For that, Pace deserved to be fired.

Random comment
Random comment
Mar 21, 2023 9:37 am

Actually, I thought Pace was reckless and short-sighted but I didn’t think he was the worst problem the Bears had. Nagy was. And Pace hired him.

Bear Downs
Bear Downs
Mar 21, 2023 8:08 am

@Thomas Gena Pace drafted Fields at the recommendation of his scouting department. I doubt that Pace actually scouted Fields and said he’s our guy. Someone pulled his arm to go get Fields and it was out of desperation to try and save his job and his regime. Pace was the genius that gave us Mitch Trubisky over Patrick Mahomes and that decision was all his. Although for Patrick’s sake he’s much better off in KC then he would have been in Chicago under the old regime. So essentially Pace did Patrick and KC a favor while screwing the team he… Read more »

Last edited 1 year ago by Bear Downs
Thomas Gena
Thomas Gena
Mar 21, 2023 8:08 am

Pick your GM winner, in the upcoming NFL draft. Your choices are:

1. Kwesi Adofo-Mensah, Vikings (5 picks)
2. Brian Gutekunst, Packers (10 picks)
3. Brad Holmes, Lions (8 picks)
4. Omar Khan, Steelers (7 picks)
5. Ryan Poles, Bears (10 picks)

Also, which GM wins his division title first?

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