So long as the sports world is on some sort of hiatus, we’re going to have some free time on our hands. I can’t tell you what to do, nor would I want to do so. All I can do is encourage you to take a moment to go through old photos, knickknacks, and memories of good times if you get an opportunity. It will be worth it for your mind and soul.
In the end, you might have a fun story to share, like the one I’ll lead off with in this set of Bullets …
- This trip down memory lane started with a tweet from JJ Stankevitz of NBC Sports Chicago:
I’m getting some great responses here but no one has mentioned Warrick Holdman yet. Remember him? https://t.co/3Rx6Dg2KQV
— JJ Stankevitz (@JJStankevitz) March 14, 2020
- Which led to this discovery:
Please tell me you still have it.
— JJ Stankevitz (@JJStankevitz) March 14, 2020
The autograph I believe is on the pass (which I can’t find because it’s probably in a box in the garage). But I did find the book, which features a whole buncha Bears we should remember (including Fred Baxter) pic.twitter.com/65rHCa2DMl
— Bleacher Nation Bears (@BN_Bears) March 14, 2020
- Long before I was an obsessed Chicago sports blogger, I was an obsessed fan. The 2002 Cubs Convention was held the same weekend as the Bears-Eagles Divisional Round Game (and the same weekend as Michael Jordan’s first game back at the United Center). It was a large weekend on the Chicago sports scene.
- The Bears were staying at the Chicago Hilton and Towers, which is where the Cubs Convention was being held. But rather than chase down Cubs for autographs, teenage Lu was drawn to the Bears. It was probably the first time in my life when football took precedence over baseball. Sure, it was weird … but I liked it.
- Most of the autographs in the image from the tweet embedded above came while I saw players come in to the Harold’s Chicken on Wabash. I loved that Harold’s, as it was the one that was most convenient for me to get to without having to go all the way out south or tag along with my pops on his trip to Indiana to get smokes — a trip that would end with a trip to Harold’s for lunch, then Moo & Oink for grocery shopping. Ahhhh …. memories.
- Some Bears names you might remember who are on that Cubs Convention program: Philip Daniels: Fred Baxter, Larry Whigham, Jerry Azumah, Bobbie Howard, Mike Green, Walt Harris, Rosevelt Colvin, Greg Jones, and Bears GM Jerry Angelo. Oh, and radio personalities Tom Waddle and David Kaplan.
- That Angelo goofed up in being unable to secure compensation for departing free agents Warrick Holdman and D’Wayne Bates is still maddening for every die-hard Bears fan of a certain age.
- Look who’s back:
— Larry Mayer (@LarryMayer) March 14, 2020
- Heart. Hustle. Muscle. Swag. That’s Danny Trevathan for ya!
- Some tag news came down on Friday:
Franchise tags confirmed today
Jaguars EDGE Yannick Ngakoue
Ravens EDGE Matthew Judon
Chargers TE Hunter Henry
Broncos S Justin Simmons pic.twitter.com/H82meqT2jA
— PFF (@PFF) March 13, 2020
- The name Bears fans probably care about the most is Hunter Henry. An injury riddled past has kept Henry from reaching his full potential. But had he hit free agency, he would have been the best target with the highest upside among players at the position. But because of the injuries, nailing down a price tag would have been difficult. It’s water under the bridge now, as he returns to Los Angeles.
- A collection of names who are free agent tightens:AustinHooper, Eric Ebron,Tyler Eifert, Jimmy Graham, Jason Witten, MyCole Pruitt, and Delanie Walker.
- Yes, Delanie Walker — a three-time Pro Bowl tight end — is a free agent after the Titans cut him on Friday. Injuries have slowed Walker down in recent years, and his age (36) is something that could ultimately limit the guaranteed dollars and years he can get in a new free agent deal. But it wasn’t too long ago when Walker was one of the best two-way tight ends in football who had plus receiver skills. A team that signs Walker shouldn’t expect peak-year performance, but instead, a player who brings a high floor and a certain amount of competence at the position.
- Would I prefer the Bears find a younger player who could grow with this group? Absolutely. But the team should do its due diligence with every able-bodied tight end on the market. And if that means kicking the tires on a 36-year-old with a strong résumé despite some recent injury red flags, so be it.
- The Bears brought in a gazillion (rough estimate) kickers last spring and summer. They should apply that same energy to all of their positions of need.
- An interesting offensive tackle prospect with ties to new Bears OC Bill Lazor:
Bengals releasing OT Cordy Glenn today, per source. Team looked to trade him but instead will wind up releasing him.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 13, 2020
- Once a Bears free agent target, offensive tackle Ricky Wagner is hitting free agency:
Source: The #Lions are releasing RT Rick Wagner, who was set to make $9M in 2020. A former free agent signing, as Detroit clears some space.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 13, 2020
- On this date in 2006, football was changed forever:
A free agent QB coming off labrum surgery…
— NFL Throwback (@nflthrowback) March 14, 2020
- I wonder how the Drew Brees signing would have gone over in today’s media climate.
- A highly regarded second-round pick who had been to the Pro Bowl, led his team to the postseason once (but was one-and-done after an 11-win season), saw his team draft his eventual replacement with a top-5 pick as he entered his fourth season in the pros, which ultimately led to his departure. What happens to Brees if this happens in 2020? Which team is busting down the door to sign a player nine months after suffering a dislocated right shoulder and torn rotator cuff? Stories like Brees’ aren’t the norm, but they go a long way toward providing perspective and serve as a reminder to keep an open mind this time of year.
- More content like this, please:
Brian Flores was made in Brooklyn.
— Miami Dolphins (@MiamiDolphins) March 13, 2020
- Good job, Arthur Blank:
— The Athletic Atlanta (@TheAthleticATL) March 13, 2020
- The obvious jokes are being made here:
Our offices will be closed until March 27 in the wake of the COVID-19 situation. https://t.co/I9gkdA6aah
— Atlanta Falcons (@AtlantaFalcons) March 13, 2020
- Obvious Shirts is doing a cool thing for a good cause: