After Sunday’s reports that Bears GM Jerry Angelo may retire following the 2011 season “depending on how it turns out,” many of us may have found ourselves excited and relieved. We shouldn’t if the Bears’ answer is to promote Tim Ruskell to GM, but that’s another discussion.
To me it’s hard to rate Angelo as great or terrible. Since taking over the Bears in 2001, the team’s record is 94-79. Contrast that with the record of 51-77 from Mike Ditka‘s firing to Angelo’s hiring. So nobody can say that current GM has been an absolute bust, especially considering that under his watch the team has won the division four times, made the conference championship twice and even gone to a Super Bowl.
But also nobody can argue that Angelo’s drafts have been shaky at best, and he has developed very few players at the wide receiver, offensive line and safety positions.
And interesting enough, Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune extrapolates from Angelo’s comments that if the GM does return as expected next year, he may go “all-in” to win.
How could he not go all-in? Why hasn’t he gone all-in yet? Angelo pulled a blockbuster trade by Bears standard, heck any team standards, by landing Cutler. What good is this if he’s wasting Cutler’s prime years without maximizing the potential for winning now?
I know we’ve seen scary results from the so-called “dream team” in Philadelphia. But comparing NFL teams is not apples-to-apples. I think Angelo adding a bonafide player at wide receiver, offensive line and defensive line for the stretch run of Julius Peppers‘, Brian Urlacher‘s, and Lance Briggs‘ careers is his only option.
That is if the team is truly committed to winning and not just enjoying $19 million in unspent salary cap space, which the McCaskey family can all split.