Bears

Ravens' payback? Bears don't owe Baltimore

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Ravens' payback? Bears don't owe Baltimore

Saturday, April 30, 2011
Posted: 10:14 a.m.

By John Mullin
CSNChicago.com

Maybe the Baltimore Ravens really owe the Bears a thank-you instead of thinking the Bears owe them a draft pick.

Maybe the Ravens should cut the Bears a check.

Or maybe the trade snafu between the Bears and Baltimore Ravens was really just a matter of some sort of justice-scale balancing.

Somehow you have to think that Mike Tice probably thinks so.

It was Tice as Minnesota Vikings head coach in 2003 who thought a first-round deal was done with the Ravens and GM Ozzie Newsome. The Ravens didnt get their part of the trade completed with a phone call to the league, the trade didnt happen, Minnesota fell down a couple of places and the Vikings didnt get the draft picks they thought they had along with the player they wanted, Oklahoma State defensive tackle Kevin Williams.

Tice was miffed and he didnt even get so much as an apology from Newsome, whose comment was interesting: A deal is not a deal until I talk to Joel Bussert, and I never talked to Joel Bussert.

This was the same Joel Bussert who never got the Bears call Thursday night.

Bears GM Jerry Angelo offered an apology to the Ravens for the foul-up that resulted in the non-trade between the two teams, the Bears getting Gabe Carimi without giving the Ravens a fourth-round pick, and the Ravens missing their turn and falling behind the Kansas City Chiefs in the draft order.

Commissioner Roger Goodell encouraged Angelo to give the Ravens a make-good on the deal and send them the pick they originally were going to. Angelo stood firm that the apology was all Baltimore was getting.

The only thing Im going to say is they have rules when you do something wrong, not when people make mistakes, Angelo said Friday night. A mistake was made, no rule was broken, okay, lets just make that clear here, and as Ive said last night, I think we made the proper amends from our part and certainly there was no intent other than to do the best we could and it just didnt work out.

Angelo isnt worried about his reputation or that of the Bears either, for that matter.

No, there isnt anyone in this media room that hasnt made a mistake, he said. We made an honest mistake, no more than that; theres total transparency. You make your apologies and we did. If there are consequences, you accept those consequences and then you move on. So be it. It wont be my last.

For that matter as well, maybe the Ravens should at least appreciate that the Bears saved them some money. Baltimore got the player it wanted in Colorado cornerback Jimmy Smith but got him at No. 27 instead of 26, meaning a notch lower on the pay scale for rookies, whatever that ends up being based on negotiations for the upcoming collective bargaining agreement.

At last years rookie rates, the difference between the five-year contracts given to the Nos. 26 and 27 picks was about 600,000.

So, wonder if Ozzie Newsome or Ravens owner Steve Biscotti send the Bears a thank-you note, you know, with one of those white gift envelopes that have that little round hole where only the face on the money shows?

Maybe.

Maybe not.

John "Moon" Mullin is CSNChicago.com's Bears Insider, and appears regularly on Bears Postgame Live and Chicago Tribune Live. Follow Moon on Twitter for up-to-the-minute Bears information.

Why coming to the Bears was the right opportunity for Harry Hiestand to leave Notre Dame

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AP

Why coming to the Bears was the right opportunity for Harry Hiestand to leave Notre Dame

There wasn’t a single game Harry Hiestand coached while at Notre Dame — 77 in total — in which he didn’t have a future top-20 pick starting at left tackle. 

Zack Martin (16th overall, 2014) was followed by Ronnie Stanley (6th overall, 2016), who gave way to Mike McGlinchey (9th overall, 2018). Hiestand also developed Quenton Nelson, who went on to be the highest interior offensive lineman drafted (6th overall, 2018) since 1986. Nelson and McGlinchey became the first pair of college offensive line teammates to be drafted in the first 10 picks since 1991, when Tennessee had tackles Charles McRae and Antone Davis go seventh and eighth. 

“It wasn’t surprising because the kind of guys they are, they absolutely did everything the right way, the way they took care of themselves, the way they trained, the teammates that they are and were,” Hiestand said. “They just did it all the way you wanted them to do it. So it was. It was a good moment.”

Hiestand said he had a sense of pride after seeing his two former players be drafted so high, even if he wasn't able to re-unite with either of them. The Bears, of course, didn’t have a chance to draft Nelson, and had conviction on using the eighth overall pick on linebacker Roquan Smith (as well as having tackles Charles Leno and Bobby Massie in place for the 2018 season). 

Anecdotally, one former Notre Dame player said (maybe half-jokingly) that Nelson and McGlinchey were fighting each other to see who could get drafted by the Bears to play with Hiestand again.

“There’s nobody that I’ve been around in this game that’s more passionate about what he does,” McGlinchey, now with the San Francisco 49ers, said of Hiestand at Notre Dame’s pro day in March. “There’s really only two things that are important to him, and that’s his family and then his offensive linemen. There’s a lot to be said for that. 

“In this game, everybody’s always trying to work an angle to up their own career — he doesn’t want to do anything but coach O-line, and that’s what really sticks out to us as players. He cares for us like we’re his own. Obviously he coaches extremely hard and is very demanding of his players, which I loved — he pushed me to be the player that I am.

“I’m standing in front of all you guys because of Harry Hiestand. But the amount of passion and care that he has not only for his job but his teaching abilities and his players is what sets him apart.”

Hiestand could’ve stayed as long as he wanted at Notre Dame, presumably, given how much success he had recruiting and developing players there. But six years at one spot is a long time for a position coach, especially at the college level, where the grind of recruiting is so vital to the success of a program. It’s also not like every one of the blue-chip prospects Hiestand recruited to South Bend panned out, either. 

So Hiestand knew he wanted to get back to the NFL after coaching with the Bears under Lovie Smith from 2005-2009. It’s a new challenge for him now, not only to develop second-round pick James Daniels but to continue the growth of Cody Whitehair and Leno while getting the most out of Kyle Long, Massie and the rest of the group (back during his first stint with the Bears, Hiestand had the luxury of coaching experienced, more ready-made offensive lines). 

As one of the more highly-regarded offensive line coaches in the country, though, Hiestand could’ve jumped back into the NFL whenever, and nearly wherever, he wanted. And for him, coming back to the Bears was the perfect fit. 

“That’s an awesome, awesome place, a great franchise,” Hiestand said. “It was something, I always wanted to go back, I didn’t know where I would get the opportunity. So I’m just very fortunate it just happened to be back at the same place that I was before. There are a lot of things that are different but there’s also a lot that’s the same. 

“But it’s one of the — it is the greatest organization. Historically, this is where it all began, and being part of it — and the other thing, and I told those guys when I got here, when we get it done here, you guys are going to see this city like you’ve never seen it. And I remember that. That’s what we’re after.” 

On a scale of 1-10, Tarik Cohen says his dangerous level is 12

On a scale of 1-10, Tarik Cohen says his dangerous level is 12

Don't be fooled by Tarik Cohen's height. He has towering confidence and he's setting up to have a big role in coach Matt Nagy's offense in 2018.

“On a scale of 1-10, the dangerous level is probably 12,” Cohen said Wednesday at Halas Hall about the impact he can have in the Bears' new system. “Because in backyard football, it’s really anything goes, and it’s really whoever gets tired first, that’s who’s going to lose. I’m running around pretty good out here, so I feel like I’m doing a good job.”

Cohen proved last season he can thrive in space. He made an impact as a runner, receiver and return man and will have a chance at an even bigger workload this fall, assuming he can handle it.

With Jordan Howard established as the starting running back, Cohen knows his touches will come in a variety of ways.

“It might not necessarily be rushes,” he said. “But it’s going to be all over the field, and that’s what I like to do. Any way I can get the ball or make a play for my team, that’s what I’m looking forward to doing.”

Cohen averaged 4.3 yards-per-carry as a rookie and led all NFL running backs in the percentage of carries that went for at least 15 yards. He's a big play waiting to happen.