Bears

The Bears have traded for Nick Foles and Twitter has some thoughts

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USA Today

The Bears have traded for Nick Foles and Twitter has some thoughts

Let the QB hunger games begin! The Jaguars have traded Nick Foles to the Bears and Mitch Trubisky is currently waking up in a cold sweat, realizing he finally has some competition to be the starting QB in 2020. 

So naturally people had opinions about and took to Twitter to share their thoughts (and in some cases, grievances) on the big move. 

Former Bear and current Twitter user Kyle Long remains optimistic as ever. 

But for some Chicagoans, Foles' arrival may bring back some painful memories. 

Why must it always come back to the double-doink? 

It should be noted that Foles is a Super Bowl MVP, and when was the last time the Bears had one of them around? 

It was also pointed out that Foles has worked with Matt Nagy before and would fit well in his offense. 

But for some Bears’ fans, they’re having a harder time getting excited. 

 

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Akiem Hicks wonders if Colin Kaepernick can be welcomed back into NFL

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USA Today

Akiem Hicks wonders if Colin Kaepernick can be welcomed back into NFL

As more and more NFL players speak up in the wake of George Floyd’s killing, two things are clear: many African American players didn’t feel like they could stand by Colin Kaepernick in 2016 and they plan to handle it differently this time around.

In fact, with so many players speaking up -- and enough of the NFL now sympathizing with Kaepernick’s original message (and, more importantly, understanding it) -- Bears defensive tackle Akiem Hicks even suggested Kaepernick could be welcomed back into the league.

“I wonder if he gets a job,” Hicks said Wednesday. “I wonder if now they say, ‘Hey we need to bring you back in. We’ve seen the injustice. We’ve seen the wrong in the situation that we put you in. And we want to fix it.’ Now is it signing him back? Is it giving him a position in the league? Maybe he works on the social justice committees. Maybe he’s involved in a greater role, to make sure we don’t have these instances again. I can’t speak to how to fix the situation.”

Hicks, Bears linebacker Danny Trevathan and wide receiver Allen Robinson all spoke candidly in Zoom calls with reporters Wednesday. Hicks was especially raw and honest, admitting he feared he would lose his job if he knelt with Kaepernick. At the time, he was in his first year with the Bears and on somewhat of a two-year “prove-it” contract before getting a big extension in 2017.

“At that time when Kaepernick was taking a knee I had the same thought that 85, 90 percent of the league thought at that moment. If I get down on one knee in front of this stadium, I am fired. My job, my career, my life is over. I will be blackballed,” Hicks said. “And then to come out on the other end and watch it actually happen to Kaepernick it just tells me my feelings were real.”

And yet, despite the obvious repercussions that players were facing, both Hicks and Trevathan feel like they could have done more.

“I feel like we all could’ve done a little bit better in that aspect. I did what I felt was important, and that was taking a stand and I joined the (Bears’) social justice committee just to make a difference,” Trevathan said. “It’s real life. We’re dealing with that now today. Football is football, man. And wrong is wrong. And right is right. It costs nothing to love one another. It costs nothing to care about one another. We can’t keep ignoring stuff and putting it under the table. We have to be a man about it and deal with it and actually take actions without fearing the repercussions of stuff. What the repercussions are, we’re still in it. We have to take action, man.”

It appears more peaceful protests from players are on the way, perhaps even kneeling during the national anthem again. The question is: will the NFL establishment be more accepting this time?

"I do think (the NFL) would be tolerant of it,” Robinson said. “Do I think that is the next step? I’m not sure if that’s the next step but I think that’s probably in the talks.”

Trevathan added: “I’m gonna make sure I do my part, whatever it is. I’ve got two little ones I’ve gotta grow up and teach what’s going on in the world. I don’t want to give them a broken world that’s confused and (full of) hatred. I don’t want them to deal with that. But the reality is, I’m not doing this for me. I’m doing this for them. I’m doing it for people after me. I might not reach my goal, but I will get close to it. I will help and do my part. That’s what I’m here for as a man.”

In many ways, this feels like a second chance for the NFL. It’s unfortunate that players feel regret for not standing by Kaepernick when their employers were making them feel like they couldn’t. The league now has the opportunity to do the right thing. Hicks wondered if the Kaepernick situation can be rectified and included the Bears in the conversation. He wondered if Kaepernick could get a job in the NFL again.

“We watched it. We saw how it unfolded. And we see that he doesn’t have a job now,” Hicks said. “And this call isn’t to advocate for Kap getting a job, but I will say that he did sacrifice his position for where he is now. I can’t say (he’s in a) tough spot, but I will say this, his career was ended because of it in my opinion.”

Hicks paused and added:

“We signed Mike Glennon.”

 

 

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Will NFL players start kneeling again? For Bears, the answer's not so simple

Will NFL players start kneeling again? For Bears, the answer's not so simple

Regarding Colin Kaepernick, there are a few things that Akiem Hicks is certain of: 

1. The quarterback lost his job because he chose to take a knee in protest. "Do I think that Kaepernick would have gotten a good deal? Yeah, I think he would have gotten a good deal if he had not protested," he said. 

2. At the time that Kaepernick was protesting, taking a knee meant giving up a career in football. "I had the same thought that 85, 90 percent of the league thought at that moment," Hicks added. "If I get down on one knee in front of this stadium, I am fired. My job, my career, my life is over. I will be blackballed. And then to come out on the other end and watch it actually happen to Kaepernick it just tells me my feelings were real." 

Fast forward five years, and Kaepernick's original message continues to feel as evergreen as always. The killing of George Floyd and subsequent protests against police brutality that are taking place in cities across the nation have refocused the spotlight on the quarterback's message, and even have some considering whether taking a knee during anthems will return to NFL sidelines in 2020. 

"I think that’s probably in the talks of being a possible action taken," Allen Robinson said. "And again, I’m saying that to say that as far as everybody coming together – because we saw on the opposite end people doing different things on the other side of it and not taking a knee – so again, I think that could possibly be something that would show the unity of the league and teams acknowledging the wrong that they had with that and just how that kind of whole situation went down..." 

"But is that the exact cause of action? I’m not 100% sure, but I’m pretty sure that will probably be thrown in the mix somehow.”

Robinson raised the question that, perhaps unsurprisingly enough, was echoed by the other Bears players who talked with media on Wednesday afternoon. It's undeniably true that embracing peaceful protests is still something that NFL subculture struggles mightily with, but what comes next isn't as clear. Do more players take a knee this fall? How will the NFL react? Is taking a knee still the most practical form of protest? These are but a few of the tough issues lying squarely on the player's shoulders. 

"I haven’t thought about it, I really haven’t considered it," Hicks said. "Do I see it being a possibility? It could be, it could be. I guess in my mind, I want another step. I want to see something bigger, different. That already turned out negatively, and we understood what he meant by it. I will say this: let’s make the situation better. I’ll choose change over having to take another knee. I’d rather we just move on."

For his part, Matt Nagy mainly sidestepped giving a solid answer one way or another on any potential protests, only mentioning that "whatever we end up doing together, it will be just that. We’ll talk it through and we’ll see." He did mention that when those conversations started happening, "sitting back and completely listening" to the players was his top priority. No one's certain about what the next sideline protest will look like, but if the last two weeks have shown football fans – and the general population, really – anything, it's that it's less a matter of 'if' and more of 'when'.

"Back then it was just like made about one situation, about the military, and that’s what everybody was focusing on," Danny Trevathan added. "‘People are disrespecting the flag, disrespecting the military ..." 

"So it wasn’t about that. It was about something bigger than that issue. It was about police brutality and the way we treat people. Right now, I feel like we are taking a different stand because people are sick of it. It’s not just black people. This is not a black issue. This is a racial war."