Chicago Bears GM Search: Phil Emery or Jason Licht, Does It Matter?

Darrell HorwitzSenior Writer IIJanuary 27, 2012

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 22:  A general view of fans posing for a picture in front of a blow up of the Chicago Bears during the NFL Fan Rally at Trafalgar Square on October 22, 2011 in London, England.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

The process is winding down, and the Chicago Bears will soon be announcing the selection of the new general manager to lead them into the future. Phil Emery and Jason Licht are battling head-to-head for the coveted position.

The winner will have little power and will basically be a figurehead since they were told they have to keep coach Lovie Smith. Smith will also probably oversee their draft selections and give a thumbs up or thumbs down to their choices.

The Bears scoured the NFL for the best available candidates for the position, or as Hub Arkush said on 670 AMThe Score this week, none of the candidates were on any of the lists of the top guys for the job according to the NFL insiders he talked to.

So it's business as usual with the mom and pop shop called the Chicago Bears.

Only the Bears would do things backwards like this and tie the hands of the person they are expecting to right a sorry situation.

Perhaps that is why they did things the way they did, knowing the best people for the job wouldn't accept coming in with anything less than full authority to do what they thought was necessary.

This way they could get the candidates who wouldn't cost much, since they're still paying former GM Jerry Angelo for two more years.

Breaking down the final two, Licht is the New England Patriots director of pro personnel, while Emery is the Kansas City Chiefs director of college scouting.

I think I know the one the Bears will pick.

If I were a betting man, my money would be on Phil Emery, who started his NFL career in Chicago, working for them from 1998 to 2004.

Emery knows his way around Halas Hall and how the team operates. He knows president Ted Phillips and the McCaskeys.

The Bears don't seem like they want to upset the apple cart. Emery knows many of the scouts already in place, so he probably wouldn't make many changes.

He worked with Lovie Smith before he left the organization, and also worked previously with interim GM Tim Ruskell in Atlanta. Ruskell named Emery Atlanta's college scouting director, so he probably figures he owes him.   

With Emery more entrenched in college scouting, Ruskell can handle the pro side and stay on board so the Bears don't have to pay another salary to someone they just let go.

That decision will be the new GM's, so if you hire the guy most likely to take that route, you can sway the decision the way you want it to go.

Not wanting to anger the masses, even the Bears knew they couldn't hire Jerry Angelo's pal Ruskell for the job, so this is the next best thing .

He would be as comfortable as an old shoe for them. They wouldn't have to break someone new in, because what if that guy didn't fit?

Former GM Jerry Angelo always talked about how hard he worked, and that nobody would outwork the Bears.

The same has been said about Emery. He's considered such a tireless worker that some prognosticators have said he would probably outwork the other four guys combined that the Bears interviewed.

I wonder just once if the Bears would consider hiring the guy who could outsmart the other GMs. You know, work smarter, not harder.  

Nah, I don't think so. That's not how things work at Halas Hall.