Bears

Due diligence could cost Bears dearly

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Due diligence could cost Bears dearly

Among his core tenets, legendary UCLA coach John Wooden counseled: Be quick, but don't hurry. He was offering what could be very good advice for the Bears.

President Ted Phillips said Tuesday that the Bears would be not be rushed in their search for a general manager to replace fired Jerry Angelo.

That is sound business policy. That could also be a problem.

Because being too deliberate could cost the Bears shots at the top candidates for the job. If they were not prepared to move very quickly to replace Angelo with an upgrade over someone who got them to four NFC North titles, two NFC Championship games and one Super Bowl, the move to jettison Angelo could blow up in their faces.

The Bears have Baltimores Eric DeCosta at the top of their list, having asked the Ravens for permission to interview the 40-year-old director of player personnel.

Phillips said this week that the Bears do not have a timetable. They may need one considering market conditions. Both the Indianapolis Colts and St. Louis Rams have asked for permission to interview DeCosta.

Phillips and the Bears presumably did not make the Angelo move without an established short list of perceived top candidates in mind. The problem could be what those candidates, and other teams, have in mind.

Were going to do our research, were going to be thorough, and were going to find the right guy, Phillips said. Im sure the other teams feel the same way and well find the guy who makes sense for the Chicago Bears.

If the guy who makes sense for the Chicago Bears was Reggie McKenzie, that name appears to be already going off the board, with Adam Schefter at ESPN reporting that Reggie McKenzie will leave the Green Bay Packers and take over the GM job with the Oakland Raiders.

The Colts also are looking for a general manager to replace Bill Polian, and that is a franchise with the No. 1-overall pick of the draft, which projects to be a selling point over the Bears, who have the No. 19 pick. The Bears also do not have a tradeable legend (Peyton Manning) that could bring a franchise-altering ransom in return.

Like the Raiders, the Bears have their head coach (Lovie Smith) in place, which appears to be no deterrent for at least one candidate. Coincidentally (?), Indianapolis is keeping coach Jim Caldwell.

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Who might be the next Bears head coach?

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USA TODAY

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Who might be the next Bears head coach?

Hub Arkush (Pro Football Weekly/670 The Score), Teddy Greenstein (Chicago Tribune) and Danny Parkins (670 The Score) join Kap on the panel. Fox Watch continues. Is his dismissal a foregone conclusion? And how many other coaches will be fired after this season? Plus, the guys discuss Jerry Jones vs. the NFL and the latest installment of “As The Bulls Turn.” 

Listen to the full SportsTalk Live Podcast right here:

With matchup against Golden Tate looming, Bears need Kyle Fuller to have a short memory

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USA Today

With matchup against Golden Tate looming, Bears need Kyle Fuller to have a short memory

A couple of relevant stats on Detroit Lions receiver Golden Tate: Passes toward him average 6.5 yards in the air, the second-lowest average among NFL receivers this year (via NFL Next Gen Stats). Tate, though, leads receivers with 315 yards after the catch, and is ninth in the league with 659 total receiving yards. 

The point: Matthew Stafford gets Tate the ball quickly, and when he gets the ball, he’s a dangerous weapon. 

“He’s kind of built like a running back and runs like one,” Bears defensive coordinator Vic Fangio said. “Once he gets the ball in his hands, he’s a double threat – not just catching it but then after he catches it what he does with it. He’s good on the low routes but yet he can get deep balls also, too. He’s kind of a complete receiver with really good running ability after the catch.”

This is especially relevant for Kyle Fuller, who whiffed on a third down tackle attempt on Green Bay’s first drive last weekend, resulting in a 38-yard gain for Randall Cobb. Fuller went on to have his worst game of the season, allowing 127 yards and a touchdown on 10 targets and missing five tackles, according to Pro Football Focus. 

Fuller was one of the Bears’ best defensive players in October, and with free agency looming after this year looked like he could be setting himself up for a sizable payday. But he’ll need a short memory to move on from his struggles against the Packers. 

“I hope (he has that),” Fangio said. “You need to at that position in this league.”

If Fuller’s tackling issues re-surface this weekend, Tate could be in for some gaudy numbers. Or Fuller could find his starting spot in jeopardy, with Marcus Cooper — who signed a three-year, $16 million contract in March but has only played 14 defensive snaps in the last three weeks — in position to play if coaches make that call. 

“Anything but your best effort in tackling, both from a mindset and technique stand point, is going to be needed when you are going up against a guy like this,” Fangio said.