No, it’s not the man you guys are all thinking about. The most important “J” to Bears fans is the GM Jerry Angelo, because he will determine the future of the Bears this offseason. The Bears could return to their winning ways of two years ago, or continue on their downward slide from last year.
So I decided to go straight to the source, the GM himself, in an exclusive interview that not even Jay Glazer could land.
Q: So Jerry, what were your thoughts on the past Bears’ season?
Jerry: It was a positive year. We sorted out some key issues, and we gathered some momentum by winning the last two games. Momentum is really important at the end of the season, just look at the Packers; they carried the momentum from the end of the ’06 season into the NFC championship game this year.
Q: (Puzzled) Ummm...but Jerry, the Bears went from a Super Bowl team down to 7-9, missed the playoffs, the starting QB got benched, the No. 1 RB looks like a bust, and the only division team they beat was the Packers. Plus, the Packers won the last four games with Brett Favre and a young team that was improving. We won the last two with Mr. Ugly Neckbeard and a veteran team that is regressing.
Jerry: But we beat the Packers twice, and the Packers went all the way to the NFC championship game. So, if you do the math, that would make us the third-best team in the NFC. Plus, I told Kyle I’d give him a $200,000 bonus if he keeps the beard for the remainder of his contract. I wanted to see if he could withstand the pressure to remove it, because that thing is butt-ugly (laughing devilishly), and umm...the ability to handle pressure is a trait that a quarterback must have.
Q: (Laughing in approval) Hilarious, that is quite possibly the smartest thing you‘ve done as a GM, especially considering your math skills. Anyways, QB is the most glaring need on the team, since the Bears don’t have a decent one. How come you didn’t go after one of the top QBs in the draft?
Jerry: See, what the fans don’t realize is that we already have two QBs who have each won multiple games in the NFL. That is a situation the other 31 teams would kill to have. Why draft a young quarterback when we already have two in Rex and Kyle?
Q: But do you really trust your team with a QB like Rex, who shows a knack of getting injured and is wildly inconsistent? Also, Orton doesn’t look like a franchise QB either.
Jerry: The QB position doesn’t even matter, because as Lovie says, we get off the bus running the football, and Cedric Benson is one of the best in the business at getting off the bus.
Q: (Confounded) What does that even mean?! If you had so much confidence in Benson, why did you draft RB Matt Forte in the second round? I heard recent comments from Lovie that it was still Benson’s job to lose. Don’t you think it is beneficial for the team to have a training camp competition for the spot instead of just giving Cedric the starting job?
Jerry: Lovie said what?!(Muttering angrily under his breath) Well, we found out last year that Cedric plays better when he thinks he has competition for the job, so we drafted a RB in the second round to make him think that he’s fighting for a job, but we never intend to give Forte the starting nod.
Q: What are your thoughts on Cedric’s boating incident? You’ve taken a tough stance on off-field issues before, for example with Tank Johnson.
Jerry: Apparently Cedric is not as good at getting off a boat as he is getting off the bus. (Snickering) Sorry, I had to get that in. As for the Bears policy for off the field transgressions, it’s like our President once said, “Fool me once, shame on...umm...shame on you. Fool me...umm...you can't get fooled again.” He’s a smart cookie for coming up with that.
Q: (Rolling my eyes in frustration) I don’t think the President came up...you know what, forget it. Moving on, Bernard Berrian departed via free agency and Muhsin Muhammad was let go because he was old and expensive, leaving the team without its top two WR’s from last year. Marty Booker is back, but he’s not the same player he was during his last stint with the Bears. Are you happy with your WR group?
Jerry: First of all, Marty was great four years ago, and he’s going to be even better now since he has four more years of experience under his belt. Plus, we have the next great WR in the NFL, Devin Hester. Do you know how fast Devin is in Madden? He’s got a 99 speed rating! I’m pretty sure that is going to translate to the field next year.
Q: I totally know what you’re talking about! Every play in Madden I just throw the ball deep to Hester and he outruns the defender to the end-zone every time. So Jerry, the biggest offseason story so far is that your defensive captain, Brian Urlacher, is skipping voluntary offseason workouts because he is upset about his contract. How do you plan to resolve this issue?
Jerry: (Nervous) Ahem, you know there’s a saying out there; do not try to fit a square pig into a round barn, and that’s what we don’t want to do with Brian’s contract. Anyways, I have to go; Ron and I are in an intense battle of Madden. Don’t tell anyone, but Madden is where Ronnie gets his playbook from.
Q: Wait, Jerry you didn’t even answer the question!
Angelo had left before I could sneak in another question. So Bears fans, I hope your fears about the team are eased with training camp coming up. I’m still petrified, so I’m just going to hang on to the memory of the ‘06 Super Bowl team by only playing Madden ’08 for the rest of my life, just like I did with Madden ’03. Well, only until the next version with a good Bears team comes out.