Usually at this point we are mired in Lovie Speak and another round of Jerry Angelo telling us how close we are. Then Free Agency rolls around and we do nothing until all the big names are off the market, then we may dip our toes in.
After yesterday's press conference we heard from a different JA than we are used to. Both Coach Smith and OC Ron Turner have endorsed Kyle Orton as next year's QB, but Angelo wasn't so quick to follow suit.
"I know that there's going to be a lot of talk about our No. 1 receiver [but] guys, it starts with the quarterback," Angelo said. "We have to get the quarterback position stabilized. And we're fixated on that."
It would be nice to think that JA would go after a big name. Could Donovan McNabb be gotten at a price that doesn't cripple our future drafts or our salary cap? Could Carson Palmer be wrangled out of Cincy? Would the Bears enter a bidding war for Matt Cassel's services? They answer is likely no to all of these which leaves us with the second tier guys.
More realistically, Angelo's newfound commitment to quarterback competition opened the door to a mid-level veteran free agent with starting experience such as Chris Simms or J.P. Losman or a first- or second-round draft choice such as Nate Davis of Ball State.
The possible real good from Angelo and Ron Turner not seeing eye to eye could lead to more change. Could the disagreement lead to Turner being let go? One can only hope.
Angelo didn't stop on the offensive side of the ball either. He was none to happy with their performance and did not give Bob Babich an endorsement. With recent talks that Angelo would like to hire Rod Marinelli in some capacity, could the Bears be replacing both coordinators?
Continuing his trend of not endorsing anybody, Angelo then leveled his sites on the players and shot one across their bows.
"I'm not hesitant to cut anybody," Angelo said.
Most think this is mostly aimed at players like Nathan Vasher and Adewale Ogunleye, both high ticket players who haven't been living up to billing.
Do Bears fans actually have a reason to be excited about this off season? Two new coordinators? Serious run at a franchise QB? No more player coddiling?