Just one year ago today, from 670 the Score to US99, people were yelling “Fire Lovie!” Tired of his bend but not break defense, his mild manor side line antics, his lack of a “Chicago mustache;” Bears fans wanted him launched. Well, Bears fans got their wish, and the ever so powerful Phil Emery cleaned house and brought in the riverboat gambler Marc Trestman. As each week passes, it’s becoming clearer and clearer that Emery made a huge mistake in launching Smith.
Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think Trestman is a terrible coach, but he’s not suited to be a head coach in the NFL. His unwillingness to challenge questionable calls and his odd decisions to go for it on fourth down should make all Bears fans scratch their head. His decision in Green Bay to go for it on fourth down just three weeks ago was straight up suicidal; it worked that time, but hasn’t worked since. One of the big sticking points with Lovie was his inability to manage the clock. Trestman has been even worse. His decision not to use any timeouts in the Baltimore game was totally inexcusable. His defense ended bailing him out, but to not give your offense even an opportunity to respond was crazy.
Lovie had his faults too, but you never saw the Bears get embarrassed. Under Trestman, we have seen that numerous times. Lovie didn’t allow his defense to put up back to back poor performances. He always seemed to push the right buttons to get his guys to step up and play hard. There’s no way in hell Lovie would be allowing Shea McClellin to be on the field for as many snaps as Tucker and Trestman are. Lovie recognized that Shea was strictly a third down “rushman,” something the new regime has yet to figure out.
In addition to poor defense, the Bears have also taken a major step back in special teams play. The decision to let Dave Toub go is killing the Bears right now. Dave is the best special teams coach in the NFL, and was a Lovie guy. If Lovie was still around, Dave would have still been on the Bears staff. Any Bears fan can see, our special teams is a below average unit, and something we aren’t accustomed to seeing, while the Chiefs (Dave’s new team) are thriving.
The decision should have been easy for Emery in the offseason, retain Smith and hire Trestman as OC. Trestman was desperate to get back in the NFL and was interviewing for OC jobs across the league. The Bears and Browns were the only teams to give him a legitimate shot as the head guy. There’s no doubt in my mind that he would have accepted the OC job here to get the chance to work with Cutler. Just imagine Bear fans what this team could be like with Trestman running the offense, Lovie and Rod Marinelli running the defense, and Toub running the special teams. It’s a question that I hope our big headed GM is asking himself.
From Emery’s questionable drafting decisions, to his decision to launch Lovie, it provides this Bears fan little hope. Sure, he might sound better at the podium than Jerry Angelo, but there’s no way you can make an argument that he’s done a better job than Jerry. Angelo whiffed on some first round picks, but he brought in a lot of late round talent and assembled a solid front office that made the Bears playoff contenders for several years. Until Emery reaches a super bowl, Angelo will always be on a higher pedestal than Phil. Hopefully he hits on this upcoming draft and brings in some players to fix this defense, but I have little hope. Can someone say Scott Pioli 2.0, I hope not, but Emery is reminding me more and more of his former boss every passing day.