Peyton Manning: best QB ever? That’s asking a wrong question


Peyton Manning: best QB ever? That’s asking a wrong question

The much-anticipated retirement end of Peyton Manning’s career was the start — actually, the continuation — of another one of those greatest-ever discussions/debates/arguments. In Manning’s case the conversation has been ongoing as the numbers piled up.

Stop it. Pull the camera back and look at a bigger picture for a moment.

Greatest composer of all time? Beethoven or Mozart? Or what about Brahms? But hey, I mean, if you’re a lullaby guy, c’mon, man, gotta be the Big Brahm’ster. (And no, I loved “Beautiful” but I don’t see Carole King in this discussion. Sorry.)

[MORE: Peyton Manning reportedly plans to announce retirement on Monday]

Greatest artist of all time? You say Monet, I say Michaelangelo. Then some guy over in another booth pipes in with how great were the ones who just had sharp stones to work with and did frescoes on cave walls? (Michaelangelo was good, sure, but does he nail that chapel gig if he has to be looking around for saber-toothed tigers all the time?)

Fact is, if we’re playing a pickup game, you take Manning, I’ll take Tom Brady/Otto Graham/Brett Favre, and let’s play. OK, you take Brady, I’ll take Manning, or Graham.

The beauty of all this is that there is really no wrong answer. Ask the players who played with Brady and guess who they say. Or ’06 Colts who beat the Bears with Manning in Super Bowl XLI. Think the ‘70s Steelers would trade anybody for Terry Bradshaw? Not a chance.

The numbers aren’t really much help, since the tectonic plates of the NFL are always shifting so much. Brady won Super Bowls in three of his first four years starting and never threw more than 28 TD passes in any of those seasons. Manning threw fewer than 28 TD passes in just five of his 16 full seasons.

[SHOP: Gear up, Bears fans!]

Is Manning really better than Brady based on TD passes? Or Brady than Manning because of rings?

None of which is really the point. The beauty really is in the eye of the beholder, and just as in any beauty pageant, is Miss USA really, really prettier than Miss Zambia? Really? C’mon, man.

“Best ever” always makes for fun banter. But sometimes it’s just nice to lean back, nod, and say, “Glad you came our way.”

Mike Trout says Browns will win more games than Bears in 2018

Mike Trout says Browns will win more games than Bears in 2018

Los Angeles Angels superstar Mike Trout is quickly becoming an icon in American sports. The two-time American League MVP is enjoying another dominant season batting .335 with 23 home runs and 48 RBI.

On Tuesday, he took a swing at what Bears fans may consider a shocking NFL prediction.

“I’ve got the Browns having a better record than the Bears,” Trout told a radio reporter, according to the Los Angeles Times. Trout's comments were made in response the reporter "talking up" Chicago.

Both the Browns and Bears have had productive offseasons that involved headline-grabbing acquisitions on offense. Cleveland drafted QB Baker Mayfield with the No. 1 overall pick, traded for WR Jarvis Landry, signed RB Carlos Hyde and drafted a backfield mate for him in Georgia's Nick Chubb. They added potential lockdown corner Denzel Ward with the fourth overall pick, too. Add all that to a motivated Josh Gordon ready to contribute for a full season, and there's good reason to be excited in Cleveland.

Still, it's hard imagining Trout can be that confident in a team that's won only one game over the last two seasons. And let's not forget what GM Ryan Pace has done this offseason, one that's been praised by analysts from all corners of the NFL universe. From new coach Matt Nagy to free-agent WR Allen Robinson and all the skill players in between, the Bears are ready to make a legitimate run in the NFC North.

Trout doesn't strike out much in the major leagues, but this prediction feels like it could be a back-straining whiff.

Is Matt Forte pushing for a coaching job with the Bears?

Is Matt Forte pushing for a coaching job with the Bears?

Is former Bears star Matt Forte going to be the team’s new running backs coach?

For now, that’s Charles London’s job, who was hired to head coach Matt Nagy’s staff earlier this year.

But on Tuesday night, Forte tweeted that he would like a coaching spot with Chicago sometime in the near future.

Serving as evidence, the now-retired running back responded to a tweet from ESPN’s Adam Schefter, which announced the Broncos’ hiring of former linebacker Demarcus Ware as a “pass-rush consultant on a part-time basis.” Forte tweeted at the Bears, saying that he is “available” to take on a similar role to Ware’s new Denver gig.

Forte’s tweet was relatively cryptic, and he never specified exactly what type of job he would want with the Bears. After finishing up a storied career this past season and solidifying his name as a Bears legend, Forte has proven that he could easily coach young running backs or even wide receivers at some point.

But isn’t this all just a joke?

Forte silenced the doubters by tweeting “I wasn’t joking” as a response to an article saying that his desire for a new occupation with the Bears was simply a gag. The former workhorse was also intrigued by a fan’s tweet asking “Coach Forte??”

The mere thought of having Forte back in Chicago with the Bears’ coaching staff sent fans on Twitter into a frenzy. In April, Forte came back to Halas Hall to ink his name on a one-day contract, successfully allowing him to retire as a Bear. Now, Forte wants a lengthier stay in the Windy City.

Ware’s role with Denver is not extensive by any means and, according to Schefter, he will work a pretty scattered schedule with Broncos players. What Forte’s role would look like with the Bears is completely unknown if his plan to coach becomes a reality.

Forte has the running back credentials to take on a coaching position. In eight seasons with the Bears, Forte racked up a combined 8,602 rushing yards, second to only the great Walter Payton. Forte’s 4,116 receiving yards as a running back, 12,718 yards from scrimmage, 24 games with 100 rushing yards and 25 games with at least 150 yards from scrimmage also ranks second behind Payton.

Maybe this will be a new development in Chicago’s offseason plans, but there is no real talk of bringing one of the team’s all-time leading rushers back to the team as of right now.

Last month, NBC Sports Chicago announced Forte will be joining the network as a Bears game day studio analyst for the upcoming 2018 NFL season. And we're not joking about that.