John Fox Reportedly Unaware of Mitchell Trubisky Pick Until Right Before Draft

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistApril 28, 2017

PHILADELPHIA, PA - APRIL 27:  (L-R) Mitchell Trubisky of North Carolina poses with Commissioner of the National Football League Roger Goodell after being picked #2 overall by the Chicago Bears (from 49ers) during the first round of the 2017 NFL Draft at the Philadelphia Museum of Art on April 27, 2017 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

Chicago Bears head coach John Fox reportedly didn't learn of the team's plan to acquire the second overall pick in the 2017 NFL draft in a trade with the San Francisco 49ers until a few hours before the franchise executed the deal so it could select North Carolina quarterback Mitchell Trubisky. 

Kevin Seifert of ESPN passed along the behind-the-scenes information about the Bears' shocking draft-day swap from the outlet's Chris Mortensen.

Chicago general manager Ryan Pace quickly stressed free-agent signing Mike Glennon remains on track to start for the team despite its investment in Trubisky, per Rich Campbell and Dan Wiederer of the Chicago Tribune. But he still felt the need to make the bold move.

"If we want to be great, you just can't sit on your hands," Pace said. "There are times when you've got to be aggressive, and when you have conviction on a guy, you can't sit on your hands. I just don't want to be average around here; I want to be great. And these are the moves you have to make."

Exactly how much Fox knew beforehand remains unclear following the ESPN report, though. Later in Pace's post-round comments he made it sound like the idea of taking the UNC signal-caller was an option firmly on the table all along.

"John and I are arm-and-arm in all these decisions. So we talked about this thoroughly, and we're connected on this," he said. "John is just as excited as I am. So when you have an opportunity to get a quarterback of this caliber, you can't pass on it. So we're good."

Interestingly, it's not the first time Fox may not have been entirely involved in an organizational decision to draft a high-profile quarterback.

Darin Gantt of Pro Football Talk noted the former Carolina Panthers coach said at the 2017 NFL Scouting Combine he didn't research Notre Dame QB Jimmy Clausen before the team selected him in the second round of the 2010 draft.

"Personally, I never even watched him, because he wasn't a targeted guy for me in our pre-draft assignments," Fox said. "But I can say now I would hope we draft someone that I've actually gotten a chance to watch."

Although the Bears signaled a commitment to Glennon in the immediate aftermath of the pick, his mediocre track record suggests it won't take long for the Trubisky calls to begin. There's a strong chance he'll be the starter before the end of his rookie campaign.


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