With the 2016 season officially behind us, I believe a “Thank You” is in order …
As Bears fans, we’ve been through a ton of turmoil over the past half decade. Ever since 1-24-11, things have continually gone downhill.
I’m sure that date rings a bell, and if it doesn’t, you’re probably better off. Just in case you’re suffering from amnesia, that’s the day that our beloved Bears fell to the Packers in the NFC Championship.
Green Bay won the Halas Trophy in Soldier Field, and the Bears have been unable to recover. Instead, a barrage of poor decisions (and seasons) have plagued the franchise.
Just to name a few of the lowlights since that day …
- Bears Fired Lovie Smith after a 10-Win Season
- Phil Emery disrespected the great Brian Urlacher
- The franchise-worst defense in 2014
- Oh, and only two victories over Green Bay
It’s been tough, and at times almost impossible, to watch.
Swallowing these past five years have been like trying to swallow a horse pill without water. It’s gone down, but it wasn’t easy … not by any means.
But, you know that.
You’ve remained a loyal fan through it all. You’ve continued to wear navy and orange on Sundays.
You still watch every game that you can, despite knowing that the outcome won’t be pretty.
You still show up. You’re patiently awaiting the day that our Bears resemble the past teams that you reminisce fondly about.
For your loyalty, and from the bottom of my heart, I say …
Thank You, Bears Fans
Over the years, I’ve seen a number of fans simply give up on the franchise, but not you.
Thank you for that.
And even though it’s been tough sledding, I believe your patience will pay off.
Good things come to those who wait, right?
We’ve officially hit “rock bottom” in terms of wins and losses, with the three wins this season being a franchise-low since the NFL implemented the 16-game season.
However, even though the present is not ideal, for the first time in what seems like forever, there is promise for the future.
I can’t recall the last time we were this excited about a draft class after one season.
It appears we’re in store for a few promising futures in Jordan Howard, Leonard Floyd, and Cody Whitehair.
We’ve also brought in key free agents in Akiem Hicks and Jerrell Freeman who have helped get the defense headed back in the right direction.
As we head into another offseason … expect even more impactful additions to the team. Ryan Pace will do his due diligence and bring in more players that come from winning cultures, as he continues to build his roster.
Now, I wish I could look into my crystal ball and tell you that next year our Bears will return to the playoffs, but I don’t have one of those.
All I know is that the future is as bright as it’s been in a long time for this team.
Continue to remain patient. I know you will … Why would you give up now that the darkest of times are behind us?
Thank you for sticking around. We all know that nothing is more special than this team when they are the Monsters of the Midway, the force to be reckoned with in the NFC.
There’s a reason why they call the conference championship trophy the “Halas Trophy.”
I can’t wait for the day that it returns to its rightful home in Halas Hall. Then, maybe we can stick it to the Packers and place another Lombardi Trophy in Papa Bear’s house.