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Let me preface everything I am about to say with saying that Mitch was bad. He simply was not a good QB, so everything looked worse.

The plan to develop, pick, and support Mitch was TERRIBLE. Looking back it was comically bad and I am sure it contributed to him busting out as hard as he did. This is important because we simply cannot afford to make the same mistakes with Justin.

1. The Veteran Bridge

Mike Glennon was a horrendous football player that for some reason Pace paid and thought could hold down the job while the rookie got ready. Instead he **** down his leg and needed to be replaced after 4 games. This rushed Mitch on to the field, clearly before he was ready to play. Who knows what this did to his development long term, but I am sure it cannot be positive.

Dalton isn't good, but he is 100x better and more accomplished than Glennon. The bar that Dalton provides for Fields to get over is an "actual NFL QB" and not the guy you start when you want the #1 pick. Being better than Dalton means you are an NFL QB. Being better than Glennon means you have a pulse.

2. The Trade Up

The trade up for Mitch was born out of panic. All the talk was that Glennon was a smoke screen for drafting a QB and Pace still traded up 1 spot for a the QB he wanted. The picks he gave up were not high picks, but they were 3 mid round picks that the Bears needed to add depth to the offense that was talent devoid. When you trade up and miss it hurts you way more. I would say the trade up and where they picked Mitch was really poor value.

The trade up for Fields feels different, 1. it was necessary to land the player. 2, it was in my view not a major over pay for the distance that needed to be cover. 3, it has been confirmed that other teams were on the phone with the Giants. 3, The value of the player was tremendous. Fields was a consensus top 10 player in the draft that was secured at 11.

3. The Player Evaluation

The entire evaluation of Mitch was a mess. Pace went rogue and did not involve the entire organization. The coaches were famously left totally in the dark, and it was clear that dissenting voices were phased out. It also appears that Pace was seduced by a Jim McMahon dinner reservation and an old beat up Camry. He seem to miss the years as a backup, the 1 year as a starter, the no big games or big wins. The pinnacle of Mitch's time at UNC was an up and down performance in the Sun Bowl.

With Fields we have a guy who started for 2 years at Ohio St, was one of the biggest recruits in the country, played in big games, against big time teams, and on big stages. The resumes when you put them beside each other could not be more different. The biggest game of Mitch's life was when he played the Lions, that will not be the case with Fields.

4. The Following Picks

Following Mitch, even after losing draft capital for the move up, Ryan Pace picked a soft developmental TE from a technical school in Ohio who looked good playing against future gym teachers. Shaheen provided nothing to Mitch or the offense and was a borderline liability when he was on the field. After Shaheen, Pace picked Tarik Cohen, a good player, but a gadget guy who does not impact the offense every play.

After picking Fields Pace did not get cute or try and be the smartest guy in the room. He picked to enormous *** kickers from major conference teams who have pelts on the wall against top competition. At a minimum Jenkins will impact every snap, baring health, of the 2021 season. There was nothing cute or overthinking about these picks. Draft a QB, draft guys who will kill to protect him.

5. The Coaching Staff

The year Mitch was drafted it was to play for a checked out defensive coach in John Fox and an OC who only gets OC jobs because he knows Adam Gase. It was also a coaching staff who didn't want him, who were more concerned about their jobs than Mitch's ideal development, and who just sucked on the offensive side of the ball.

You cannot like Nagy and he has earned some of that, but the Bears have actual coaches on the staff that have worked with QBs and improved them. Flip with Carr and Wentz. Lazor with Dalton and Tannehill. This coaching staff has more job security, more invested in Fields, and better coaches on it for this development task.

6. The Supporting Case

Mitch rolled out onto the field and his #1 WR was Kendall Wright, who was out of the league after the Bears, and his #2 was a mid season trade for Dontrelle Inman who was a journeymen. His TEs were Dion Sims and Adam Shaheen who were both terrible. The OL was solid, but he was throwing passes to the worst WR core in the NFL. How you could draft a QB into that situation is beyond me. It is negligent.

To compare Fields weapons to Mitch's is comical. Fields has 4 WRs who would have been the unquestioned #1 WR on that team. His line is on par or better, depending on Jenkins development. In the backfield he has a more dynamic player in Montgomery, and at TE, say what you want about Kmet, he is significantly better than Sims and Shaheen.

 

 

Reflecting on the Mitch plan, pretty much the entire thing was a complete disaster. Comically bad plan and execution. The Bears need to avoid these pit falls with Fields.

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Good stuff... not to derail the thread, but I'm of the opinion that Nagy did Mitch zero favors with developing a scheme around him. He tried like hell, even telling him during a game to "man the F up" to force his offense down Mitch's throat, and that -- to me -- played a major role in his failure to thrive here.

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20 minutes ago, G08 said:

Good stuff... not to derail the thread, but I'm of the opinion that Nagy did Mitch zero favors with developing a scheme around him. He tried like hell, even telling him during a game to "man the F up" to force his offense down Mitch's throat, and that -- to me -- played a major role in his failure to thrive here.

I agree, but I also think Mitch was so limited that it made it much harder.

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Nice summary Windy.

Quite possibly Pace's biggest mistake in drafting Mitch was that he was drafted for a HC and scheme that had not even been fully envisioned yet let alone hired.  Although it's been said since that Fox would have preferred Watson did Pace somehow believe Mitch would be easier to sell and to who?  Trading up is no longer much of a surprise since Pace has shown since then that he's more than willing to do it to insure he gets the specific player he wants.

Mitch was a half way decent college QB with significant athleticism whose never ascended to be more than a half way decent pro QB.  In the NFL decisions must be made much faster, the ball has to come out sooner, and the throwing windows are much tighter.  Mitch never seemed to adjust to that.  Fields will go through the same process as he ascends and hopefully does far better. Mitch may have hit his ceiling and will now be little more than a talented #2.

The Glennon deal was clearly a mistake.  I'm not certain even now what Pace ever saw in him that made him believe he was the correct choice of a bridge QB for Mitch and I do believe it also proved to be a costly mistake in terms of Mitch's initial experience and his development.  Pace didn't want to play him but Fox had little choice.  He was a 90% checked out already poor choice trying somehow to save his job with an equally poor OC and a rookie QB.

In the four years since that draft Pace has grown as a GM becoming far more aggressive in his willingness to spend both money and draft picks to get the players he wants.  Signing ARob has given us a dependable #1 WR we've often lacked and the trade for Mack keeping him out of Green Bay has also paid off even though it's hampered us in other ways.  I'm hoping Quinn's lack of success in 2020 was an anomaly caused by a slow recovery from an injury and poor conditioning.

The changes in Paces drafting and approach to filling needs with vet FA has been a process that unfolded over these past four years. This year they entire front office and coaching staff seemed better prepared to react to the opportunities to draft players they coveted with no hesitation at all once those opportunities presented themselves.  The front end of the draft was a combination of luck and preparation but the back end showed how well they done their homework as well.

While my feelings and attitude about the upper management team of Phillips and GMcC hasn't changed I do feel that Pace and Nagy have earned some grace and some additional time to work through the changes they've helped bring about.  Nagy will still need to prove he has the ability to be a winning NFL HC with an offense that can produce the points needed to win consistently and that needs to begin immediately.  The time for excuses has long passed.

Pace and Nagy appear to have improved the team enough this offseason to believe they can win one or two more games than they have these past two years but whether they will or not remains to be seen.

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The Bears are in a much better position to support a young QB than they were in 2017. The plan on paper seems to be better. I guess that is the positive side effect to missing on Mitch, the team was set up for a young QB.

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3 hours ago, WindyCity said:

The Bears are in a much better position to support a young QB than they were in 2017. The plan on paper seems to be better. I guess that is the positive side effect to missing on Mitch, the team was set up for a young QB.

They SHOULD be in line to have learned from their mistakes. Nagy was also present in house to see how Andy Reid's blueprint to develop Patrick Mahomes was deployed.

Alex Smith is retired, right? I have a feeling you'll be seeing him around Halas Hall from time-to-time...

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Did Nagy really want to coach Trubisky?  Quite often it didn't seem like did.  How many times did Trubisky throw 30+ times?  A lot, and he's not that type of QB. 

Pace should have gotten some flack for trading up one spot for Trubisky when SF was going to draft Solomon Thomas anyway.  WE gave up picks 67 and 111 to SF, along with a 2018 3rd rounder.  SF traded both 2017 picks, guess who was picked at 67 that year?  Alvin Kamara.  If we stayed at 3, took Trubisky(or Watson or Mahomes) and with our original 3rd rounder we could have had Kamara.  It was rumored we wanted Dalvin Cook that year.

I think there is some potential in Trubisky.  I'm not saying he'll be a top 10 QB, but I think he can a good QB in this league(he was a pro bowl alternate in 2018)

 

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10 minutes ago, Bowler1215 said:

Did Nagy really want to coach Trubisky?  Quite often it didn't seem like did.  How many times did Trubisky throw 30+ times?  A lot, and he's not that type of QB. 

Pace should have gotten some flack for trading up one spot for Trubisky when SF was going to draft Solomon Thomas anyway.  WE gave up picks 67 and 111 to SF, along with a 2018 3rd rounder.  SF traded both 2017 picks, guess who was picked at 67 that year?  Alvin Kamara.  If we stayed at 3, took Trubisky(or Watson or Mahomes) and with our original 3rd rounder we could have had Kamara.  It was rumored we wanted Dalvin Cook that year.

I think there is some potential in Trubisky.  I'm not saying he'll be a top 10 QB, but I think he can a good QB in this league(he was a pro bowl alternate in 2018)

 

Mitch is bad. The league is paying him the same amount as Blaine Gabbert. You can’t play in the NFL if you can’t hit a consistent deep ball within 5 yards.

Mitch is Mark Sanchez.

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3 hours ago, Bowler1215 said:

Did Nagy really want to coach Trubisky?  Quite often it didn't seem like did.  How many times did Trubisky throw 30+ times?  A lot, and he's not that type of QB. 

Pace should have gotten some flack for trading up one spot for Trubisky when SF was going to draft Solomon Thomas anyway.  WE gave up picks 67 and 111 to SF, along with a 2018 3rd rounder.  SF traded both 2017 picks, guess who was picked at 67 that year?  Alvin Kamara.  If we stayed at 3, took Trubisky(or Watson or Mahomes) and with our original 3rd rounder we could have had Kamara.  It was rumored we wanted Dalvin Cook that year.

I think there is some potential in Trubisky.  I'm not saying he'll be a top 10 QB, but I think he can a good QB in this league(he was a pro bowl alternate in 2018)

 

All stuff I'm tucking under the heading of "unsolved mysteries".

My only comment is that Pace's aggressiveness some years ago before he'd acquired as much experience as he has now often betrayed him.  We could point out a half dozen or more mistakes he made by becoming a bit too "fever struck" to draft a specific player and far too easy as far as handing out big $$$ guarantees to vets to never produced.

Once Nagy was hired his approach changed for the better and his moves in both FA and the draft became more focused on far better talent albeit at a much higher cost both in $$$ and traded draft picks.  But there's no denying the caliber of players he got began to improve drastically.  Hr doesn't hit a homer on every at bat but his batting average is much improved now.

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Just a little speculation here but maybe, as others have alluded to, that's because Pace picked Nagy, was involved with bringing in the other coaches and he trusts them.  The coaches listen to the scouts, filter what the scouts say with their experience and point Pace to the players they want and need.  Pace then makes sure everyone understands what its going to cost in other opportunities that will be lost.  They all buy into the plan and Pace works that plan in the draft and free agency to get the players he can.  I hate to say this because I can hear the groans as I type but that's collaboration.  There is more that has to be done.  The coaches still have to develop the players, put them in  the best position to win and the players have to execute.  The organization has achieved their objective, we are all talking about it and want to see what happens next.  After all that is really what it is all about.  Winning is just a means to an end.

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A lot of good points.  Now we really get to see what Nagy and his staff are really made of. 

New Coaches? Check

New QBs? Check

Revamped OL? Check

I don't want to hear any more excuses with Nagy if he fails to make this situation work.  Fields is by far the most talented QB this organization has ever had so if he doesn't pan out then I'm fully blaming Nagy this time and not the player.

Although Mitch wasn't being done much favors while he was the QB for this team, he was a lot more limited than some people want to admit.  Fields on the other hand is a blue chip prospect and I'm still shocked that we managed to get him considering our chances.

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5 hours ago, Bfan said:

Just a little speculation here but maybe, as others have alluded to, that's because Pace picked Nagy, was involved with bringing in the other coaches and he trusts them.  The coaches listen to the scouts, filter what the scouts say with their experience and point Pace to the players they want and need.  Pace then makes sure everyone understands what its going to cost in other opportunities that will be lost.  They all buy into the plan and Pace works that plan in the draft and free agency to get the players he can.  I hate to say this because I can hear the groans as I type but that's collaboration.  There is more that has to be done.  The coaches still have to develop the players, put them in  the best position to win and the players have to execute.  The organization has achieved their objective, we are all talking about it and want to see what happens next.  After all that is really what it is all about.  Winning is just a means to an end.

This is coming into sharp focus as the Rodgers vs Gutekunst standoff up in the Cheese Tundra heats up.

Whose more important, the players or the organization itself?  The answer is obviously both since it's the organization who supplies the players which of course is Rodgers gripe.  Gutekunst is not getting him the ones he prefers and he's released others Rodgers wanted him to keep.  Looking at it from a distance he's not entirely wrong either.

But in the end it's the organization which survives many decades of player turnover and where championship teams are built and championships are won.  Look no farther than a comparison of GB and the Bears and we can see that beginning around 1990 as the SB team the Bears had built began to decline with age GB was beginning it's resurgence.

The past 30 years have been a clear indication of how the Packer organizations and it's GMs have consistently out managed the McCaskey's, their former GMs, and idiots who thought they knew what they were doing personnel wise like Mikey McCaskey and Dave Wannstedt.  For the majority of the past 30 years they've cleaned our f'n clocks.

Over the past decade or so this has become my biggest gripe.  Mediocre management has produced nothing but mediocre teams.  If we've begun to turn the corner on that it will only be because Ryan Pace is finally becoming that top NFL Exec I've been insisting the Bears have needed to hire to replace Ted Phillips and GMcC as the top decisions makers.

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12 hours ago, G08 said:

Garbage take. 

He really is. He is a highly drafted career backup who can once in awhile string some games together on a really good team.

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1 hour ago, topwop1 said:

A lot of good points.  Now we really get to see what Nagy and his staff are really made of. 

New Coaches? Check

New QBs? Check

Revamped OL? Check

I don't want to hear any more excuses with Nagy if he fails to make this situation work.  Fields is by far the most talented QB this organization has ever had so if he doesn't pan out then I'm fully blaming Nagy this time and not the player.

Although Mitch wasn't being done much favors while he was the QB for this team, he was a lot more limited than some people want to admit.  Fields on the other hand is a blue chip prospect and I'm still shocked that we managed to get him considering our chances.

We hope the OL is revamped. It will have to show growth early in the season.

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