Bobby Massie is "Grizzly as Hell" and Wants to Return to the Bears in 2019

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Bobby Massie is “Grizzly as Hell” and Wants to Return to the Bears in 2019

Chicago Bears

After enduring some lean years under John Fox, Chicago Bears right tackle Bobby Massie doesn’t want to go anywhere.

“We’ve built something,” Massie said, via John Mullin of NBC Sports Chicago. “I’ve been lucky enough to be part of a culture change, and it’s like night and day from when I first walked through the door to now. It’s an amazing thing to see, just to see players who’ve grown so much. I’ve had a chance to see Mitch (Trubisky) grow from day one to now. It’s just amazing. I am invested. I’ll just keep playing, doing my job and the rest’ll take care of itself.”

Those sound like words from a player who doesn’t want Sunday’s regular-season finale against the Minnesota Vikings be his last in a Bears uniform. Because while Massie heads back to Arizona for training, the 29-year-old Ole Miss product considers Chicago home and has expressed a desire to stay with the team. And because this is the first time Massie has been a part of a winning team since his final season in Arizona, when the 2015 Cardinals went 13-3 and made an appearance in the NFC Championship Game, it really makes sense. Once you get a taste of winning, it’s not something you want to give up all that easily.

But because it takes two to tango, Massie’s long-term future in Chicago remains undecided.

The Bears have reasons to bring him back into the mix. In addition to seeing the Bears transform from an NFC bottom-feeder to a division champion, Massie has experienced individual growth, as well. Massie owns PFF’s 19th best pass-blocking grade, while notes he has been called for just four accepted penalties this season. That puts him in good standing among some of the league’s better tackles. Clearly, new Offensive Line Coach Harry Hiestand’s methods are paying off for Massie, as well as the team. And yet, Massie’s future is still so unclear.

Chicago could save some cap space by letting Massie walk after the season, but it could have saved some cash last offseason had the team decided to part ways with him before roster bonuses kicked in. GM Ryan Pace isn’t expected to have a ton of space to work with, but it looks like there will be some wiggle room once they start going about their business. So while getting younger and creating some more flexibility is attractive to an extent, there’s definitely value in Massie as a reliable right tackle for a team squarely in its competitive window. The last thing the Bears need is to mess with something that isn’t broken and create a question-mark along the offensive line.

The Bears’ leap of faith in Massie paid off in a big way for 2018, but the big man doesn’t want this to be the last ride: “I’m a Bear. Grizzly as hell,” Massie told Mullin. “I am a Bear through and through.”

Only time will tell how many more games Massie has left in a Bears uniform. Here’s hoping he gets to suit up in navy and orange through February.

Author: Luis Medina

Luis Medina is a Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at@lcm1986.