Bears

Miller: Who will be the next Bears GM?

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Miller: Who will be the next Bears GM?

With another potential general manager for the Bears now off the list, lets focus on some potential candidates in president Ted Phillips league-wide search for the Bears' next GM. Eagles Director of Player Personnel Ryan Grigson has agreed in principle today to become the next general manager of the Indianapolis Colts. Here are some names worth noting before the Bears potentially settle for Tim Ruskell.

Bill and Chris Polian
Former Chairman and GM of the Indianapolis Colts respectively.
It is hard to argue with Bill Polians track record. Polian built the Buffalo Bills into a powerhouse in the late 80s-early 90s. The Bills represented the AFC in four consecutive Super Bowls. After Buffalo, Polian put the Carolina Panthers on the map before directing the Colts to unprecedented success. Bill was grooming his son Chris to take over day to day operations of the Indianapolis Colts before 2011s devastating injury to Peyton Manning which derailed a decade of success. The Colts achieved seven years of 12 win seasons with two Super Bowl appearances. One of them being a World Championship by defeating the Chicago Bears. Chris is a tireless worker always on the road evaluating talent. The one caveat is the Polians services were no longer needed due to not having a backup plan for Manning. Peyton had not missed one game his entire NFL career. Potentially, the Polians could be hired in the same capacity for the Bears or Bill Sr as consultant with Chris Polian as GM. The positive is the Polians have drafted for a Tampa 2 defense numerous seasons in Indianapolis.

Tom Telesco
Director of Player Personnel of the Indianapolis Colts.
Telescos name has popped up on numerous teams radar. Most likely, because of Bill Polian and the Colts' unprecedented success in the AFC South. Telescos resume starts and stops with the Polians.

Nick Casario
Director of Player Personnel of the New England Patriots.

Nick is in his 11th season with the Patriots. Casario is another tireless worker who spent a number of seasons under GM Scott Pioli (now Chiefs GM). Nick understands day to day operations and works in close concert with Bill Belicheck on personnel decisions.

Steve Kiem
Director of Player Personnel of the Arizona Cardinals.

Kiem is in his 13th season with the Cardinals elevating from College Player Personnel to the pro side of things. Kiem is also well taught under current GM Rod Graves tutelage. The Cardinals have been one of the better drafting teams in terms of talent and finding diamonds in the rough that fit their scheme. Dont go by the Cardinals record this season! They were 8-8, but won seven out of their last nine games. The Cardinals were overhauling their team, restocking from a Super Bowl appearance two years ago. Off the current Cardinal 53 man roster, 51 new Cardinals were signed after the lockout.

John Dorsey
Director of College Scouting Green Bay Packers

Eliot Wolf
Asst. Director of Pro Personnel Green Bay Packers

They are good names, but not quite groomed completely in day to day operations like what Reggie McKenzie was doing alongside Ted Thompson before leaving to take the general manager position of the Oakland Raiders.

Roquan Smith helps shear a sheep at Bears community event

Roquan Smith helps shear a sheep at Bears community event

Roquan Smith has more sheared sheep than tackles on his stat sheet as a pro football player.

Smith and several other Bears rookies participated in a hands-on community event at Lambs Farm in Libertyville, Illinois on Monday where he assisted farm staff with the sheep's grooming. Smith said it was a first for him despite growing up around animals. 

"It's like on the norm for me though, playing linebacker you're in the trenches," Smith said of the experience.

"Shaving a sheep, I never really envisioned myself doing something like that," Smith said via ChicagoBears.com. "I was around animals [growing up], but it was more so cows and goats here and there and dogs and cats. I've petted a sheep before, but never actually flipped one and shaved one."

Bears rookies got up close and personal with more than just sheep.

Smith was selected with the eighth overall pick in April's draft and will assume a starting role opposite Danny Trevathan at inside linebacker this season. Here's to hoping he can wrangle opposing ball-carriers like a sheep waiting to be sheared.

The Bears' defense is ahead of its offense, but Matt Nagy doesn't see that as a problem

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USA Today Sports Images

The Bears' defense is ahead of its offense, but Matt Nagy doesn't see that as a problem

Asking players about how the defense is “ahead” of the offense is a yearly right of passage during OTAs, sort of like how every baseball team has about half its players saying they’re in the best shape of their life during spring training. So that Vic Fangio’s defense is ahead of Matt Nagy’s offense right now isn’t surprising, and it's certainly not concerning. 

But Nagy is also working to install his offense right now during OTAs to build a foundation for training camp. So does the defense — the core of which is returning with plenty of experience in Fangio’s system — being ahead of the offense hurt those efforts?

“It’s actually good for us because we’re getting an experienced defense,” Nagy said. “My message to the team on the offensive side is just be patient and don’t get frustrated. They understand that they’re going to play a little bit faster than us right now. We’ll have some growing pains, but we’ll get back to square one in training camp.”

We’ll have a chance to hear from the Bears’ offensive players following Wednesday’s practice, but for now, the guys on Fangio’s defense have come away impressed with that Nagy’s offense can be. 

“The offense is a lot … just very tough,” cornerback Prince Amukamara said. “They’re moving well. They’re faster. They’re throwing a lot of different looks at us and that’s just Nagy’s offense. If I was a receiver I would love to play in this offense, just because you get to do so many different things and you get so many different plays. It just looks fun over there.”

“They’re moving together, and I like to see that,” linebacker Danny Trevathan said. “We’re not a bad defense. They’re practicing against us, so they’re getting better every day, and vice versa. It’s a daily grind. It’s going to be tough, but those guys, they got the right pieces. I like what I see out there. When somebody makes a play, they’re gone. Everybody can run over there. It’s the right fit for Mitch, it’s the right fit for the receivers, the running backs.”

Still, for all the praise above, the defense is “winning” more, at least as much as it can without the pads on. But the offense is still having some flashes, even as it collectively learns the terminology, concepts and formations used by Nagy. 

And that leads to a competitive atmosphere at Halas Hall, led by the Bears’ new head coach. 

“He’s an offensive coach and last year coach (John) Fox, I couldn’t really talk stuff to (him) because he’s a defensive coach and it’s like Nagy’s offense so if I get a pick or something, I mean, I like to talk stuff to him,” Amukamara said. “He’ll say something like ‘we’re coming at you 2-0.’ Stuff like that. That just brings out the competition and you always want that in your head coach.”