clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Rod Marinelli, Greatest Person Ever!

I have always been a Rod Marinelli supporter.  Even when they were on the brink of being the first 0-16 team in NFL history, I spoke in his favor.  I felt that he did not quit and his team did not quit.  They faught harder the second half of the season then most teams that are supossedly suppose to be Super Bowl bound (Dallas).  I think they just didn't have the talent and that falls to management.

So when he was cut loose and immediately linked to Lovie I again spoke on what a great idea it is.  Now that he is a part of the Chicago Bears I have to wonder if we just signed a relative of Mother Teresa.

The amount ah shuxing and love fest that has followed Marinelli is staggering for guy who currently is only a position coach.

Normally a  guy about to go 0-16 would be getting lame duck and dead man walking stories, instead Marinelli is getting praise from the analysts:

He didn't pick Tony Sparano, who turned Miami from a 1-15 team into an 11-5 team. He didn't pick Mike Smith, who turned Atlanta from a 4-12 team into an 11-5 team. He picked Marinelli.

While saying "nothing went right" for Marinelli, Brown praised him for "the class and dignity that he displayed in standing up there in the postgame press conferences."

Analyst Phil Simms added: "It isn't always about winning and losing. It's about trying your best and doing it with class. We overlook that a lot. That's what Rod Marinelli did."

And former players?  Wow, you'd think he was everybody's own personal fairy godmother;

''I was at a point on and off the field where things weren't going well,'' Hovan said. ''I was at my breaking point. I figured if I'm going to roll the dice, I might as well do it with an elite coach. To his credit, Rod Marinelli turned around my career and much more. Who knows what would have happened to me.''

That from Chris Hovan.

Let's see what a few ex-players think, how about we start with an ex-Bears, Ron Rivera:

''Oh, the Bears just got a whole lot better,'' said former defensive coordinator Ron Rivera, who played under Marinelli at Cal. ''He is one of my favorite persons in the world. He gets down to the players' level and makes you want to run through that wall for him.''

How about ex-teammates from college? Hank Bauer:

''I've got no idea why we called him that,'' Bauer said. ''But I can tell you that of all the people I've come across, and I've met a lot of people, he's top five in terms of integrity, honesty and, most importantly, having perspective. Chicago just got a jewel of a man.''

The biggest praise comes from former player Warren Sapp. Sapp has credited Marinelli for turning him from an average athlete destined to be a mid range guy into a potential Hall of Famer. 

I am still looking for the link, but I have found reference to a interview with Sapp where he pretty much trashed highly thought of Tampa Bay coordinator Monte Kiffin and said the Bucs success was because of Marinelli.

If I didn't now any better I'd think we just hired a real life saint.

When a guy is hired he says a lot of things that are just saying what everybody wants to hear, but with Marinelli when he says:

"And as an assistant head coach, whatever Lovie wants, I'll do. I can line the fields. I can mow. That's just me."

You get the impression that he means it and would actually enjoy doing it.  

Unless the Bears go against history and Bears tradition and bring in a guy like McNabb or Boldin you get the feeling that this will end up being the biggest and best move the Bears do this off season.