I started the year with a goal of spending less on ordering in, but have found myself snagging delivery way too much the last nine days or so. Being mindful of what I wanted and what I’ve been doing, I’m planning on making some meals that should last me a few days. That begins tonight with my version of my friend Jim’s short-rib chili. But for this episode, I’m using a pound of ground beef brisket. It should be good! And I know it’ll last me throughout the weekend. Happy eating, friends!
• While the Chicago Bears prepare to run it back for 2021, other teams around the league are announcing changes. Go figure. On the one hand, I believe the Bears missed out on a golden opportunity to shake up their organization, make meaningful changes, and change the franchise’s direction. But on the other hand, based on what we heard during Wednesday’s press conferences, I wonder if Chicago’s football team is better off hoping GM Ryan Pace and Matt Nagy can right the ship. Otherwise, we’re talking about putting faith in a chairman who consults rival owners and keeps it in the family when making football decisions, as well as a team president who has overseen two decades of sub-optimal results. This whole thing makes being stuck between a rock and a hard place sound cozy.
• The Lions’ hiring of Brad Holmes as their new general manager is among the most recent high-profile hires. Holmes was previously the Rams’ Director of College Scouting. This seems like a solid hire for Detroit, which hasn’t been hitting on draft picks at a consistently good level for … forever? Considering how the Rams have been shipping out first-round picks like hot cakes in recent years, to see that team be so competitive and deep despite not having those top selections is a testament to their scouting eyes. Holmes will try to bring that to Detroit.
• I never thought I’d be jealous of the Jacksonville Jaguars, but here I am:
A new era begins.
— #DUUUVAL (@Jaguars) January 14, 2021
"I love Jacksonville… Duval and 904 deserve a chance to go win."
— #DUUUVAL (@Jaguars) January 15, 2021
• Hiring Urban Meyer is one heckuva dice roll. But it’s equal parts intriguing, enticing, entertaining, and loaded with upside. Nothing like landing a big-name head coach in a year when your team has six top-100 picks (including four in the top-50), is about to land the most ballyhooed quarterback prospect since Andrew Luck, and has the most cap space in football. What a plum gig. Thankfully, it’ll be a while until the Bears have to square off against the Jaguars again.
• It’s not an NFL hiring cycle without a punny headlines from the New York hot sheets:
— Back Page Guy NYDN (@BackPageGuyNYDN) January 15, 2021
Welcome to New York…. pic.twitter.com/PSy4HuWPln
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 15, 2021
• The Panthers have a new GM in Scott Fitterer. Which means both GM openings the Bears’ own Champ Kelly interviewed for have been filled by other candidates. It’s disappointing that Kelly won’t get a chance to take his game to another level. Then again, the Bears could use all the help they can get. And keeping Kelly gives them a better chance of acquiring the type of talent that will help them shake back-to-back 8-8 years.
• Chicago does have one high-profile hiring to make this year with its defensive coordinator opening. Defensive Line Coach Jay Rodgers and Safeties Coach Sean Desai are already targets worth keeping an eye on once the process officially gets underway. I feel as if Chicago should move quickly here. Not only does Rodgers figure to be a DC candidate elsewhere, other jobs will take worthwhile candidates off the board. Especially jobs that come with a head coach who has more stability than Matt Nagy, who has just two years remaining on his current contract.
• This thread hit me where it hurts:
I was talking to a Bears fan friend today after the press conference, discussing the basis for Bears fan fury, and it led me to look at some key numbers of the past 25 years comparing us, the Packers, and the Lions. And frankly, we're closer to being the Lions than the Packers. pic.twitter.com/BVMKN9gtHx
— Jack M Silverstein (@readjack) January 14, 2021
• It’s always good to read about the Bears honoring prep athletes for their work in the community:
— Darren Kinnard (@deuceandabuse) January 14, 2021
• I realize he’s on the other side of the Cheddar Curtain, but Wayne Larrivee was the voice of Chicago football for a long time. So with that being said, I fully plan on listening to this at some point:
New episode is live with the voice of the Packers, @waynelarrivee! We talk:
– His meteoric rise through the business
– His two decades in Chicago sports
– His trademark call, ¨There´s your dagger¨
And much more!
— On the Air Podcast (@ontheairPxP) January 15, 2021