I am spending my day at my old stomping grounds at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale. The highlight of the day will be catching up with friends, but also, basketball. Go Dawgs!
- Khalil Mack is all-in on playing Sunday, even if there isn’t something greater to play for:
- Mack isn’t alone, as Bears Head Coach Matt Nagy expects Akiem Hicks will play on Sunday against the Chiefs. Hicks has practiced all week, though was listed as questionable to play because of an elbow injury. That placement on the injury report offered up a window for the Bears to sit Hicks, but the sense is that the Bears will closely monitor Hicks’ time on the field. Nagy called it “more of a managing thing.” I call it playing with fire. But that’s just me.
- This is truly admirable stuff from guys like Mack and Hicks, who want to play despite the Bears having being eliminated from the postseason. But at some point, it would be great if wiser heads prevailed and gave these guys one last pat on the back for a great year and to rest up for 2020. There’s always a bigger fish, and I hope that someone at Halas Hall realizes it at some point before the regular season ends.
- Best of luck to Mack, Hicks, and all of the Bears defenders assigned to stop Tyreek Hill on Sunday:
— Kansas City Chiefs (@Chiefs) December 15, 2019
- Over at NBC Sports Chicago, Cam Ellis writes about how Hill’s top-end speed is the type of challenge the Bears haven’t seen this year. It will be a unique showdown between a defense that still features two Pro Bowlers and a pair of alternates stopping a high-octane group from Kanass City. It’s not like the Bears have a squad full of slow pokes out there. It’s just that there’s speed … and there’s whatever level of juice Hill has.
- This doesn’t look life fun:
- This is some heady thinking from a preparation standpoint:
#Bears brought in P Ryan Anderson for a tryout today. Nothing to do with Pat O’Donnell. Anderson is left-footed and #Chiefs P Dustin Colquitt is left-footed. Chance to give Tarik Cohen some work getting ready as return man.
— Brad Biggs (@BradBiggs) December 19, 2019
- Speaking of Cohen, he is a guy players at his alma mater look up to as they make their way through North Carolina A&T:
Jah-Maine Martin has broken records, received awards and has dreams of making it to the NFL someday like Aggies alum Tarik Cohen. His journey to be a great running back started way before he came to A&T. https://t.co/kh7P4KXtZa pic.twitter.com/HXhda2V6f8
— The Undefeated (@TheUndefeated) December 21, 2019
- This isn’t going to surprise anyone, but no Bears check in among PFF’s top-25 offensive linemen. Good list, though.
- What do Russell Wilson, Nick Chubb, Michael Thomas, Chris Godwin, George Kittle, Travis Kelce, Aaron Jones, Stefan Diggs, Joel Bitonio, Jason Kelce, Erik McCoy, Marshal Yanda, Mitchell Schwartz, Kyle Juszczyk, and Patrick Ricard have in common? They are all on Robert Mays’ should-be NFL All-Pro team offense at The Ringer … and were all picked after the first round. This should serve as a reminder that – as we head into a crucial offseason for the Bears – great players can be drafted at any point and that making the most out of the available draft picks should be a priority for Chicago’s front office moving forward.
- An ex-Bear gets a sweet new gig:
Athletic Director Mark Pos has named former Chicago Bears fullback Jason McKie as head varsity football coach at Carmel Catholic. Jason was a member of the Bears from 2003 to 2009 and played in Super Bowl XLI. Jason also played for the Eagles, Cowboys, Saints, and
— Carmel Catholic High School (@CCHSCorsairs) December 20, 2019
- Happy birthday to a guy who has been a whale of a free agent signing:
- The smart-guy takeover of sports was one of those things of the 2010s I will never forget:
NFL teams took 38% of their snaps from the shotgun at the beginning of the decade. That number would become 64% by the end of the decade. https://t.co/oIgmA793Ab
— WSJ Sports (@WSJSports) December 20, 2019