Bear Down? The Two Faces Of Chicago Bears Management

Bear Down? The Two Faces Of Chicago Bears Management

The false assumption of an appearance of virtue.

That is, in part, how the dictionary defines the word "hypocrisy." You might also refer to it as talking out of both sides of one's mouth, contradicting one's self, or being full of it.

I would attach the following picture to any definition:

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Jerry Angelo, the General Manager of the Chicago Bears, is on the hot seat. Anyone that's watched the seasons since the Super Bowl, and the nice little press conference where President Ted Phillips decided it was time to take things seriously.

Lovie Smith is also on the hot seat. He's a boring personality in a city that's used to powderkegs like Ditka, Durocher and Guillen. He also makes awful decisions on a regular basis that, at times, he gets away with because of the talent he has to work with. At other times, like the last four years, he hasn't been able to get away with much because of the roster Angelo gave him.

But now that there is fire under their respective rear ends, Angelo and Smith have decided to issue in an era of accountability at Halas Hall.

Now, because Tommie Harris "isn't good enough" to be part of the lineup, Smith sits him down. And as fans, most people don't have a problem with that because of Harris' inability to produce in recent seasons. With this new edition of the Chicago Bears, if you don't produce, you don't dress.

Well, let's talk about hypocrisy, shall we?

Last year, mid-season with two productive defensive ends on the roster, Angelo traded the team's highest draft pick (a second round pick because the first was in Denver as part of the Jay Cutler trade) for Gaines Adams.

Once the fourth overall pick in the draft, Adams averaged fewer than two (2) tackles per game in his NFL career. He managed to rack up 13.5 sacks in 47 career games. He was, in every way, a draft bust that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers couldn't get rid of fast enough. So, after one-third of the season, Angelo dealt a second round pick for him.

Unfortunately, Adams passed away after ten games in a Bears uniform. He was young (26) when he passed, and there were reportedly traces of marijuana in his system in the autopsy.

With zero intention of making a death sound trivial, Angelo traded ridiculous value (better than the Raiders got from the Patriots for Randy Moss) for a player that was inches from being cut by a last place team.

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After last season ended, the Bears needed to make a decision at defensive end. Adewale Ogunleye was overpriced and over-the-hill, and his time had clearly come and gone in Chicago. But the end opposite Ogunleye, Alex Brown, was a player forcing a decision from Bears management. Brown was the leading tackler on the defensive line last year, and led the team with six sacks. He was an emotional leader on the sidelines and in the locker room.

On the other hand was Mark Anderson, the kid that had a breakthrough rookie season and instantly got paid. He had fallen out of the rotation, and was a casual observer most of the time he was on the field.

Angelo kept Anderson to play opposite the new golden boy, Julius Peppers. Again, Bears management rewarded a player that had not performed.

The third and final example of this laughable hypocrisy can be summed up in four words:

"Rex is our quarterback."

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Indeed, if there is one hallmark of the Angelo-Smith Regime in Chicago, it's that spots on the depth chart are awarded, not earned, and that production means less than money. Whether it's the second round pick that was dealt for Adams, the choice of Anderson over Brown or Grossman continually being put back on the field despite solid performances from Kyle Orton, Angelo has shown less commitment to his players than he has common sense. Smith, meanwhile, has not only been part of all of these decisions, but was also part of an ego struggle that ran Ron Rivera out of town after the Super Bowl, despite his defense being one of the best in football.

Perhaps its time for Angelo and Smith to hang up their headsets for a week, so they can learn the same lesson they were trying to teach Harris.

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