Chicago Bears: Last Sunday’s victory meant everything

Chicago Bears (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Chicago Bears (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /
4 of 5
Mitch Trubisky Chicago Bears
(Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images) /

The foundation of building an NFL contender starts with the draft and then some.

I could gush about his early round hits and what was an absolute rope-a-dope to land Mitchell Trubisky, but it’s what he did late in drafts that mattered. Ryan Pace uncovered a gold mine of late round draft picks and undrafted rookies: Tarik Cohen, Eddie Jackson, Adrian Amos, Bilal Nicols, Jordan Howard, Roy Robertson-Harris, Bryce Callahan. All starters or key rotational pieces.

Hell, no one wanted Akiem Hicks (I can’t believe I just typed that). However, Pace wanted Hicks given their history together with the New Orleans Saints. He also added Danny Trevathan, Prince Amukamara, Taylor Gabriel, Bobby Massie, Allen Robinson, Trey Burton, and kept the Packers away from Kyle Fuller.

But the trade that brought Mack to Chicago was what will win Ryan Pace the 2018 NFL Executive of the Year award. Indianapolis Colts GM Chris Ballard is well deserving of the honor, but his biggest impact move doesn’t come within the same stratosphere of the Mack deal.

Chicago Bears Matt Nagy
(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention ‘Da Coaches.’

Full transparency: I thought the Matt Nagy hire was a year early and I thought he wasn’t quite ready. How could you blame me? He accepted full responsibility for the Kansas City Chiefs blowing a lead to the Tenessee Titans in the playoffs.

To be fair, there are times where he looks like he’s still figuring things out (something he’s self-aware of).

Sometimes, however, it’s better to be early with these decisions. Because now, there isn’t a clear “evil genius” at offensive coordinator that’ll get interviews this offseason. Not like Sean McVay, Frank Reich or Nagy, at least.

Bears: Cris Carter is out of touch. light. Hot

Pace’s forward-thinking saved the Bears from such a dilemma.  Nagy’s infusion of offensive creativity is something the franchise has never seen before. Even the change in culture stems from him and his beliefs (and Cubs skipper Joe Maddon).

More importantly, they kept Vic Fangio away from the Cheeseheads. While there’s a decent chance Fangio takes a head coaching job this offseason, he can rest knowing the nightmare defense he spent four years building will be left in sound hands.