The lede in this post is Michael’s fault, first and foremost, but it goes …. My favorite type of TikTok duet is when someone offers up: “Tell me ______, without telling me _______.”
And when it comes to the Chicago Bears, GM Ryan Pace and Head Coach Matt Nagy might as well have been playing along.
“Tell me you’re looking to move heaven and earth for an honest-to-goodness franchise quarterback without telling me you’re looking to move heaven and earth for an honest-to-goodness franchise quarterback.”
As expected, Pace didn’t offer up too much of substance this week.
Pace was coy:
⇒ “I would say everything is on the table with all the quarterbacks.”
⇒ “It’s been daily conversations that we’ve had. Not just talking, but watching film together, discussing different traits, discussing different players and different avenues to acquire those players and different combinations. So I think we’re ready to kind of pivot a number of ways. I think that’s going to be important this offseason. Especially this offseason.”
⇒ “Right now, just me talking to GMs through the league, that’s commonplace right now. I think you lean on those relationships and you’re able to quickly determine what’s real and what’s not and different possibilities. And there’ll be some things that might not even be in the media right now that are potential possibilities that we’re talking about. That’s normal every year.”
Nagy played it coy, too, with this zinger about how many good options the Bears could have to approach this offseason highlighting the bunch: “There’s several. We can’t get into that right now. There’s a lot of different what-ifs.”
In a way, Pace and Nagy used a bunch of words to say nothing specifically about the direction of their quarterback search. But instead, I can’t shake that the words they decided to use give me the feeling that they’re working on something that’s off the radar.
And it turns out I’m not the only one who feels that way:
There is so much that is loaded in that 8-minute, 24-second clip. And I keep replaying the “I think there’s gonna be something that shocks us. I think it could be something insane” quote over and over again.
Insert your jokes, and then let’s continue.
It sure seems like the Bears have something up their sleeve. Something tricky. An unexpected card that no one will see coming. And it has to be big. Something sizable. A move that will make us do a double-take. An acquisition that makes us look at the push notification on our phone in disbelief. The type of deal where we immediately text our friends asking: “Did you see this? Can you believe this?” Something that would make you ask if @AdamSchefter or @RapSheet got hacked. I’m not SAYING Deshaun Watson or Russell Wilson, but I’m saying something that would surprise to that level.
Because that’s what the Bears have set the table for this offseason — from the get-go. It’s all about getting he quarterback right. Not about making a marginal upgrade. Or taking on a reclamation project (consider how less-than-involved it turned out they were on Carson Wentz). But instead, taking a big swing at a high-profile name and changing the entire conversation when it comes to quarterbacking in Chicago.
And it’s what Pace has planted in the minds of fans based on his own history of transactions.
Is anyone thinking about the Khalil Mack trade right now? Because maybe we should be. Especially after Pace made a reference to it in his press conference, recalling the event thusly: “It just progresses and eventually something that might not seem realistic at the time becomes a reality.”
Remember how much of a long-shot it was for the Bears to get Mack? Some online wagering services didn’t even have Chicago as an option to be in the running for Mack’s services. So many signs pointed to Mack heading to Green Bay, San Francisco, or elsewhere. But it got done. Are we on the precipice of seeing history repeat itself? Because those are the vibes Pace and Nagy are putting out publicly. Just sayin’.