On Tuesday, the Chicago Bears hosted a press conference featuring general manager Ryan Pace and head coach Matt Nagy. With rumors swirling around about potential trades and free-agent signings, the two members of the ‘Nation of Collaboration’ did their best to clear up some of the questions surrounding the team. Today, we take a closer look at some of the key points from the press conference and break them down.
Ryan Pace Doesn’t Seem Willing To Overpay
If you look online, you’ll see hypothetical trades aplenty surrounding the Bears and top quarterbacks. Whether it’s an offer surrounding Texans’ quarterback Deshaun Watson or Seahawks’ quarterback Russell Wilson, many analysts and pundits alike have predicted the Bears would be willing to give up players and multiple first-round picks.
That doesn’t seem to be the case when examining this quote from Pace. While he didn’t close the door on any offers, it seems he’s not willing to jump the gun to make a move right now. That could change and it’s smart for Pace to not publicly overvalue players on the market, but he does seem ready to play hardball.
Tension Between Robinson And The Bears
This shouldn’t be a surprise. With the two sides failing to reach an extension after almost a year, both Allen Robinson and the Bears seem to be at an impasse. Robinson hasn’t been shy about his displeasure with the situation. As the franchise tag deadline looms, the whole thing seems to be coming to a head. Pace doesn’t seem to be afraid to use the tag if he needs to, but would Robinson be willing to play under it?
Buckle up, because we’re about to find out.
Pace Sounds Open To Trading Up In The Draft
It’s important to note that at multiple times in this press conference, Pace stated that “Everything is on the table.” That thought process doesn’t seem to change when considering a draft-day trade. While no specifics came to light, it appears Pace would be willing to move up if the opportunity arises.
While it is incredibly unlikely the team would trade up into the top-five, the upcoming draft is rather quarterback-heavy. Players such as Zach Wilson, Mac Jones, or Trey Lance are enticing for any team looking for a quarterback. However, each name could fall out of the top five. Trading up seems like a real possibility if the Bears don’t address the position before the draft.
Matt Nagy Denies Having An Ego
Nagy Outlines What The Team Wants In A Quarterback
In what was possibly the most honest moment of the entire press conference, Matt Nagy outlined what he wants out of a starting quarterback. When mentioning leadership, Nagy brought up Washington quarterback Alex Smith. This is notable considering Nagy’s history with Smith in Kansas City and the fact that the veteran signal-caller is expected to be a free agent. When discussing versatility, Nagy referenced Mitchell Trubisky. This might be the biggest endorsement Trubisky has received from the organization this offseason and the possibility of the young quarterback returning to the team is certainly still plausible.
Finally, Nagy mentioned decision-making. While no specific quarterback was named when elaborating on this point, it paints a bigger picture of what Nagy wants out of his starting quarterback. It’s also impossible to ignore that all three of these traits align with a quarterback in the trade market, Seattle’s Russell Wilson.
Matt Nagy Sounds Content With His Coaching Staff
There is no shortage of new coaches on the Bears’ staff, but the offensive side has remained fairly intact. With that in mind, it seems like Nagy is satisfied with the continuity. He mentioned that it is a lot easier to move forward and improve with guys who already know the offense. It also seems like the additions to the staff are coaches Nagy believes in. Former Texas Longhorns head coach Tom Herman recently joined the staff as an offensive analyst. Former Oregon State running backs coach Michael Pitre also enters the staff in the same role.
Outside of that, the staff remains nearly identical and Matt Nagy seems to be happy with that. Whether or not it will result in offensive improvement is another question entirely.
For the most part, this press conference was a bit of a letdown. The team doesn’t seem willing to shed any light on the plan this offseason. Several topics were discussed in hyperboles and hesitation. All that being said, nothing was necessarily shot down. It seemed as though the team is open to all possibilities with the understanding that being aggressive doesn’t equate to being desperate.
At the end of the day, the team seems to be fully prepared to be aggressive this offseason. They aren’t willing to tip their hand, but the motto of this offseason seems to be “Everything is on the table.” This press conference only confirmed that.
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