Ever since the Bears announced they were bringing back the orange jersey tops, I’ve waffled on which one I wanted. And then the Bears traded for Khalil Mack and my decision easy suddenly became VERY easy.
Of course, you can get yours here:
— Bleacher Nation Bears (@BN_Bears) September 3, 2018
- You always remember your first day:
- You’re ready for Packers Week. I’m ready for Packers Week. And it sounds like Mack is ready, too:
New #Bears pass rusher Khalil Mack on possibility of facing Packers next Sunday night: "I feel like I'm ready."
— Larry Mayer (@LarryMayer) September 2, 2018
- The fact that the Bears added a “consistently elite” pass-rusher to a defense that finished in the top 10 in scoring and yardage has me a little more amped about facing Aaron Rodgers:
The Bears newest pass-rusher has been consistently elite. pic.twitter.com/02re1WWGKV
— Pro Football Focus (@PFF) September 3, 2018
- I like the angle from Bears GM Ryan Pace regarding the loss of the draft capital invested to acquire Mack, via JJ Stankevitz of NBC Sports Chicago. “When we look at this next draft, right, our first-round pick is Khalil Mack and our next round pick is Anthony Miller,” Pace said. That’s certainly one way to paint the picture. It’s easy to vibe with this line of thinking. With a first-round pick, you hope to draft someone who develops into a player like Mack. So instead of waiting on that player (who might not even be available when the Bears pick) the team acquired the established version of that player in the prime of his career and ensured he would wear navy and orange for the foreseeable future. Sounds like a good use of draft capital to me.
- (Michael: I agree with everything Luis said above, but I do think Pace’s comment makes things sound a bit simpler than they really are. Yes, getting Mack is inarguably a good use of draft capital, because he’s awesome; however, it’s not quite like the Bears just BOOM! drafted Mack. After all, he’s 27 years old now, cost more than just one pick to acquire, and, thanks to his new and enormous contact, costs a lot to keep around. Again, it’s all justfiable – especially because there’s no guarantee that your first round pick is going to turn into half the player Mack still is – but it’s just more complicated than that).
- Mack said he believes the big-money deal will push him to prove his worth moving forward, writes Colleen Kane of the Chicago Tribune. Finding motivation isn’t easy for some, but Mack has plenty of things that should drive him to greatness. That he’s continued to push forward after establishing himself in the NFL like he was still trying to prove that two-star high school recruiting tag was bothering him is nothing short of remarkable.
- Patrick Finley of the Sun-Times writes Mack’s addition was essential for the Bears if they were going to climb to the top of the NFC North standings. After an offseason where the Vikings went all-in on Kirk Cousins, the Packers showed Aaron Rodgers the money with a healthy extension, and the Lions changed head coaches, the Bears needed their own counter-punch to what was going down in the division … and Mack was just what the doctor ordered. It’s fitting that the NFC North has three of the four highest-paid quarterbacks in football, and that the Bears now have the highest-paid defensive player in the game. That’s not a coincidence.
- The only thing that comes close to being as valuable as a high-end signal caller is someone who can make that guy’s life problematic. That’s what Mack does. He causes a ruckus in the backfield and makes everyone behind him on the defensive side of the ball better. There’s a reason fans of teams in the AFC West were celebrating Mack’s departure as if they just found out that their team was acquiring Mack himself. The Bears got better on Saturday, but so did everyone else in the AFC West (well, except the Raiders).
- Mack’s sorry about that.
Raider Nation the love you’ve shown my family and I for the past 4 years has been amazing we loved every minute of it! Unfortunately it has come to an end but I will cherish my time in Oakland forever and will forever have love for the Nation!
— Khalil Mack (@52Mack_) September 3, 2018
- I’m soooo fired up right now:
Sammy Sosa. Uncle Gary. And military strategy?
— GMFB (@gmfb) September 3, 2018
- The Bears are entering this new era with no regrets by doing things you would have never expected. Let it marinate for a moment. Chicago spent this offseason throwing waves of money at Allen Robinson, Taylor Gabriel, and Trey Burton to fix their biggest weakness on the offensive side of the football, addressing positional needs and improving depth in the draft, and then put a bow at the end of the proceedings by trading for Mack, then signing him to the biggest contract ever given to a defensive player. These are not the Bears we’ve come to know. And these are certainly not your granddad’s Bears.
- Over at Bet Chicago, Thomas Casale expresses a belief that the price the Bears ultimately paid wasn’t as large as it could have been. There is no doubt that dealing two first-round picks for the NFL’s Defensive Player of the Year award winner in 2016 is pricey, but Casale adds the perspective of the Cowboys once trading two first-round picks for wide receiver Joey Galloway. Galloway had three 1,000-yard receiving seasons, but never earned All-Pro honors or Pro Bowl berths in his years with the Seahawks that led up to the deal. So come to think of it, two-first round picks for Mack isn’t all that much.