Right Chicago Bears fans?

  • As we reach the eve of the NFL’s early negotiating period for free agency White Jim McMahon Jerseys , Chicago Bears fans are in a unique position"It’s just strange, the 2019 offseason.  there one one thing I was sure of regarding the future of the Chicago Bears... the 2019 draft would be all about a first round edge-rusher, the one big hole on the Bears team.Then Jon Gruden happened, and somehow the Bears ended up with Khalil Mack and no 2019 first round draft pick (plus swapping a 2020 first for a second round).Mack came in and everybody knows what happened. Suffice to say from the moment Khalil walked in the door at Halas Hall, edge rusher was no longer a priority.That’s a really good thing, because not only had Ryan Pace traded away his first pick (for a player who would end up All-Pro in his first Bears season) but Pace had earlier traded away his 2019 second round pick for Anthony Miller (a second for a second, plus some change). The Miller traded worked out well for the Bears, as they ended up with guy who looks like a bona fide star in the making. Two huge holes on the roster filled, and both players were key in helping Chicago win our division for the first time in a very long time.All in all, the Bears ended up the season young, solid and healthier than we probably had a right to be. After so many years of injury, we finally got a bit luck in 2018.Everything was cruising right along until somebody double doinked us out of the playoffs. We all know that there were indications of trouble in the kicking game all year Jim McMahon Jerseys 2019 , as a big money (for a kicker) guy under performed in his field goal kicking. Say what you want about Ryan Pace building a Super Bowl caliber team from the ashes (and truth is, he has) but Pace absolutely sucks at finding a kicker who can kick.Doink. Doink. Now here we are.I think everybody feels this was a year we could have won the whole thing, and that left us with an unbelievable hangover from the abrupt end of the season.It also left us with very little to look forward to for the usual off-season events. The Bears have committed most of their money and it’s hard to argue that most of that money has been spent wisely. Yes, there are guys here and there that may look a bit overpaid, but there are some outright bargains on the team as well. Coming into the offseason there were several player concerns that needed to be dealt with. There were three key free agents and one guy that needed to be fired.The most critically important free agent issue we had was Bobbie Massie on the offensive line. Nobody will confuse Massie as the best right tackle in the NFL but he’s still not an old guy, he’s improved every year he’s been in Chicago and he had a really good year in 2018 under the coaching of Harry Hiestand. The Bears were able to sign Massie to a fair extension, leaving only two big problems left and a limited amount of money to fix them. strong safety and starting nickle back.This is where it gets strange for Bears fans.Usually, right before the early negotiating period of free agency, we are all going bonkers wondering about who the Bears are going to sign. How many of the top players are going to get phone calls from Chicago? Which huge name would fill our headlines this week?Although you never know for sure, in 2019 the answer is probably nobody.We have enough cap space to fill our two glaring needs (strong safety and nickle), but that’s about it. We won’t be seeing any big-name wideouts or running backs. There won’t be any high profile young edge rushers heading our way.There’s a good chance we see one or both of Bryce Callahan and Adrian Amos return to the Bears, but there’s also a good chance we will lose both of them. It all depends on how much other teams value their services. My personal guess is that Ryan Pace keeps what powder he has dry, and does nothing early on until he can see how Callahan and Amos are playing out White Roquan Smith Jerseys , so that he knows where he’s going to have to fill holes. Having said that, Ryan Pace is a man who has surprised us many times over, so who knows?What makes this winter even stranger is the fact that Bears fans are thinking differently about the future. In the recent past, we had all kinds of cap room but most players didn’t want to come here. Those days are gone. We are not a destination that somebody who’s willing to take less for the chance to play for a ring will go to. We are also a destination that is chock full of young players who are on their rookie deals who are going to need to be paid. Going forward, the majority of our spending money will go to people like Cody Whitehair, Tarik Cohen, James Daniels, Roquan Smith, Mitchell Trubisky... homegrown players who have earned their big second paycheck. Pace has been proactive in locking these kinds of guys down (Eddie Goldman, Charles Leno, Jr.) early and often, and I think that’s a trend we can expect.There’s one last strange thing that enters the conversation this year as well. If we sign no free agents and lose Callahan or Amos, then chances are we will get one or more compensatory picks for the first time in a VERY long time. Of course Roquan Smith Jerseys 2019 , there are other offseason Chicago Bears dramas to watch play out, most notably the eventual fate of Jordan Howard’s Bears career. Will he stay> Will he be traded? If so, when?This time last year we were all screaming for outside linebackers who could rush the passer and wide receivers who could both get separation and catch the ball.This year? Strange. Khalil Mack sat out offseason workouts and the preseason, had just one week to learn a new system following a blockbuster trade, and still managed to dominate in his debut for the Chicago Bears.The two-time All-Pro performed exactly as envisioned in a prime-time opener.The Bears hope for more of that when they host Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks on Monday night. They'd just like a different outcome.Chicago blew a 20-point lead in the second half against Green Bay on Sunday night, with a hobbled Aaron Rodgers leading the Packers to a 24-23 victory that spoiled Matt Nagy's coaching debut. But before that rally, Mack was the one stealing the spotlight."Obviously he's stepped in very well," defensive coordinator Vic Fangio said. "But I think everybody likes to overanalyze things — how much can you play a guy that's just come in like that, no training camp, no nothing, hasn't played since whenever his last game was last season? But I think with special guys, you throw that stuff out the window. He's a special player. He did special things under special circumstances."Mack held out the entire offseason and preseason with Oakland while seeking a long-term contract extension rather than play under the final year of his rookie deal. The Raiders finally traded him two weeks ago. And the Bears gave Mack the richest deal ever for an NFL defensive player: a six-year, $141 million extension that guarantees $90 million.Some long sessions getting up to speed with outside linebackers coach Brandon Staley followed."I've been ready for the grind White Khalil Mack Jerseys , been waiting five months to feel the grind," Mack said. "Yeah, we've definitely been doing that."Mack sure looked ready against Green Bay.He had no trouble getting around Bryan Bulaga for a strip-sack against DeShone Kizer that led to a turnover. With Kizer hit by Roy Robertson-Harris as he unleashed a short pass, Mack returned an interception 27 yards for a touchdown near the end of the first half.But that wasn't all.He was closing in from the edge when Robertson-Harris came through the middle and landed on Rodgers' left leg while sacking the two-time MVP in the second quarter. Rodgers left the field on a cart, only to return in the second half.Mack also had pressure on Kizer when Roquan Smith got a sack on his first NFL play."He wasn't always in the best position, but he still could come up and make a play or make something happen," Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said. "To be as good as he is, to be the (2016 NFL Defensive Player of the Year), you have to have all the attributes and he has them. Speed, strength, explosion, savvy, motor — he has all that stuff. He's just getting in shape too Khalil Mack Jerseys 2019 , so he's going to get better."It's the second time in as many games the Seahawks (0-1) will be facing an elite edge rusher. They had to contend with Von Miller at Denver. And Seattle had its difficulties in a season-opening loss .The Broncos got six sacks, though some could be blamed on Wilson for running into trouble. Miller had three of them, and the Seahawks are facing another difficult challenge going against Mack."Both of them are very dynamic players," tackle Duane Brown said. "Von is just a different kind of athlete. Very, very quick. Very fast off the ball, which Khalil has the same abilities. I think he uses strength a little bit more. He plays extremely hard. He's a factor in the run and pass game; someone you have to account for. I put those guys as 1A and 1B in the league on the edge."The Bears see Mack as a player who can turn a solid defense into an elite unit and help them break a string of losing years. They have four straight last-place finishes in the NFC North and just one playoff season since the 2006 team made the Super Bowl.It helps that Mack appears to be getting a quick grasp on Fangio's system. He said he knows "95, 99 percent" of the playbook. He also felt "great" following last week's game, adding his body "missed getting beat up."He is also looking forward to playing at Soldier Field for the first time as a member of the Bears. In his only other game there, with Oakland in 2015, Mack sacked Jay Cutler on the final drive. But Robbie Gould kicked a 49-yard field goal in the closing seconds to give the Bears a 22-20 victory."I don't know what it's going to be like," Mack said. "I've seen what it's like to play there, but I don't know what it's going to be like to be a part of the home team this time around. But I'm looking forward to it."