It’s been three years since Lovie Smith was the head coach. But in 2015, the Bears are just now moving on…
A brief look back…
Personally, I was a big Lovie Smith fan. My favorite memory from his tenure was when the Bears beat the Cardinals (in one of the greatest comebacks in history) and Dennis Green dropped the infamous “The Bears are who we thought they were! And we let them off the hook!”
Hands down, that was the best post game rant ever.
Did the Bears fix something that wasn’t really broken? Yeah, probably. How can anyone not be happy with a 10-6 season? That was Lovie’s regular season record the year he was fired. Ultimately, the Bears’ organization decided he was not the guy who could help the team take the “next step.”
As we all witnessed, they really took two steps back. I think the head office of the Bears are doing their best to fix their mistakes by bringing in essentially the entire Broncos staff from a year ago, plus Vic Fangio. They did the right thing and brought in this experienced group of coaches in attempts to turn this organization around to what it was before the Smith firing. (And hopefully, even better.)
I would love to be able to rant about how good a coach Lovie was, as he was highly underrated in his time here in Chicago… However, it’s time to move on and not live in the past. With the exception of Robbie Gould, the Super Bowl team has moved on past the Bears.
We all should as well.
It is definitely time to move on as it’s way past due…The Bears tried making offensive improvements when they brought in Marc Trestman, and in turn lost a huge edge on defense.
That’s the one piece of Lovie I’d like to see being restored: the defensive tenacity he brought week in and week out. This season, Vic Fangio (although their styles are vastly different) should start to restore that defensive presence.
So now, two questions arise…
What does John Fox bring to the table?
(That question will be answered in an upcoming reason to give a damn.)
Will the Bears now be attached to Marc and have trouble leaving him behind too?
Let’s not be silly… 😀
As evident by the lack of willpower, Bears players did not seem to buy into Trestman’s philosophy nor play for the guy…
Well, it may be due to the fact that they still had a lot of “Lovie’s Guys”. That, coupled with the fact that the former GM didn’t bring back their other leader, Brian Urlacher, (which surely irked those players) makes it easy to see why the team lacked the intensity on the defensive side of the football.
Let me explain this in more detail…
Bears players (especially on defense) had a deep respect for their former coach. It’s not hard to figure out that by firing Lovie, those players who had strong ties to him would be irratated by the decision to part ways with their leader… The guy who has taught them everything since becoming a Bear.
Take that, and look at how the Bears brought in Mel Tucker and had him run Lovie’s scheme in 2013. If I were a player, and a new coach was brought in to run the scheme of the coach who was fired, I wouldn’t want to play for the new guy…
That’s what happened to Mel Tucker. Players didn’t respect him as a coach and that was evident by the drastic decline in performance during his two years as the team’s defensive coordinator.
Here’s the exciting part!
This season, with the Bears parting ways with more of “Lovie’s Guys”, especially Peanut and Lance, Chicago finally has a chance to start anew.
Don’t get me wrong, I will always have a deep admiration for those players, but for the team’s ability to move forward, they had to go.
Although there were a number of players who weren’t tied to Lovie, the players who were the leaders on defense were, and that is likely why Chicago chose not to bring back those players.
It’s time for new leadership and new loyalties to the current coaching staff, as that’s the only way to be successful in this league, by not only playing for the guy next to you, but for the coaches as well.
Looking forward to this season, it’s exciting to have that chance for a fresh start without any current player having loyalty to Lovie Smith… And having the chance to watch this Bears team play for their coaches (even though they should have all along) is just one reason to give a damn in 2015.
In Case You Missed It
Reason #1: Kevin White’s Vitality to Jumpstart Bears Offense
Reason #2: Restoration of Leadership (and the Captain Patch)
Reason #3: New Bears to Help Create New Identity
Reason #4: Players Poised to Perform in Contract Years
Reason #5: The New Coaching Staff of Fox, Gase, and Fangio
Reason #6: Continuing Along the “Cutler Coaster”
Reason #7: Top Three Draftees (Not Named Kevin White)
Reason #8: So Many Questions (Creates a Little Bit of Drama)
Reason #9: New Video Boards and New Lounge to Improve Fan Experience
Reason #10: (Finally) Moving on Past Lovie Smith