We are inching closer and closer to the start of training camp, which means we can finally get back to normalcy and lessen our focus on frivolous things like making fun of JWebb Nation (and instead make fun of JWebb the tackle) and finally start to see how the offense
adjusts explodes under new OC Mike Tice. But while we're still in a holding pattern on unveiling the Tet Tice offensive, I thought it would be fun to look back at our community's reaction to the hiring of Mad Mike Martz, the man whom Tice replaced this offseason. Hit the jump to check your kool-aid level circa 2010.
In case you need a refresher, the Bears were looking for a replacement for Ron "fullback dive" Turner, and the exhaustive search left a laundry list of candidates that either declined the job or just weren't interested (including current QB coach Jeremy Bates, Vikings QB coach Kevin Rogers, the Bengals' Ken Zampese and the Chargers' Rod Chudzinski). It took the Bears until February 1st to hire Martz, who was coming off two-year showings as offensive coordinator for the Lions (2006-07) and 49ers (2008-09).
Part of the fun of this exercise is looking at our community's feelings about a potential Martz hire before he joined the Bears and the hopeful wishes expressed after the hire that things would work out (FYI: they didn't). The first batch of comments I looked at was from a November 2009 article by Mr. Noble, wondering if Martz could get the job. LostinStl kicked it off in epic fashion:
keep Martz away from Chicago at all costs! He is a team cancer on the order of TO. Look what he left in Detroit, STL, and SF. All 3 of those teams are still trying to recover from his "help" on offense. He would ruin Cutler and leave town. His offensive schemes have already been figured out and it would be like trying to resurrect the Tampa2 in Chicago.
Seriously, with foresight like that, its time to play the lottery, along with propheteer, who forsaw the Jay-Martz "tell him I said..." exchange:
Talk about a sideline fist-fight waiting to happen.
Well, maybe not a fistfight, but if Martz actually was on the sidelines... The rest of the comments from the article were similarly unsupportive. When Kev broke the news that Martz was seen at Halas Hall on January 29, 2010, some of our esteemed WCG staffers attempted to balance out the negativity with some cautious optimism and calls for patience:
I don't know why so many people are against the guy.
I think he’d do good things with our offensive unit, especially with Tice coaching the OL.
It's actually not the end of the world to me.
Though our community seems to suggest that it’s the end of our Tight Ends and Quarterback, which time will tell.
Yeah, I'm okay with it too.
I've thought all along he'd actually be ideal for this roster.
And Lester's poignant quote:
I think he's smart enough to realize he has to use Greg Olsen in the passing game.
Sadly, he was not. But Les did make up for it by forecasting the Tice hiring:
I think a toned down version of his O would work real good.
While CloudyFuture unearthed a Troy Aikman quote about the potential hiring:
Just remember this….aikman stated if hes hired (which is a given now IMO) the fans will have to expect alot of turnovers/INTs and sacks 50+…..
Sam H. stumped for another candidate while nailing the head
of the QB on concerns about Martzfense.
I'd rather see Rogers, personally
I think Martz system is dated, it hasn’t worked great in a lot of years. His protection system leaves the QB susceptible to abuse and I don’t know how good his ego will go over in Chicago.
And SMD posed a chicken or egg situation:
torry holt, issac bruce, orlando pace, kurt warner. Sounds like Martz’s system produced some HoF’ers too
The last article we'll link to is the official "Martz is Hired" post from February 1st, 2010. Reactionary roll call, sound off (my comments in parantheses):
Just Dave: Ok. that's all I've got. (great start)
Dils: ... I'm excited... (there's one!)
Ashley Czuba: Finally! A decision! (lowered expectations)
ifuwannacrownem: Somewhere in Nashville, Jay Cutler is crying in the dark. (um, sure, ok)
Pete Dixon: Having a lot of points on the board is a great thing but do we really have the D to keep the other guys from doing the same thing? (ironically... yes)
Tim Hockemeyer: (Involved in yet another back and forth discussion that ends up on the right of the page. This one involves college academic rankings and Earl Bennett.)
A question is posed: "do we have any intelligent enough [WRs] to learn this EXTREMELY complicated offense?" The answer from SMD: priceless.
D.A. and Knox. Hester is the only one who has trouble with his routes really. I look for Bennet, DA, and Iglesias to be our primaries this year
Followed up by P.S.D.B:
DA can be our #1.
I'll give you a second to recover.... Ready? Okrap that's funny... all right, I'm good.
Jcrew1179 knows his former Bear quarterbacks turned NFL coaches well:
I don't mind Lovie but Jim Harbaugh would be excellent
Pete Dixon setting the table and cleaning it up:
PD: Maybe Kurt Warner will unretire.
T. Moore: And get killed again?
PD: He was born again once wasn't he?
mjk83 with what is a way too prophetic question:
What's the over/under on number of games it takes for the Martz offense to get Jay killed?
Which leads to commentary on the state of the Bears' line:
Chitownproduct: Hopefully A healthy Kreutz, Beekman at LG and Schaefer at RT will improve our Run blocking. I don’t know if i can drink the koolaid on Frank Omiyale as starting LG just yet.
Sackman: Why do you guys think Cutler is going to be sacked a gazillion times? Martz never had a mobile QB to work with. Martz had pocket passers in Trent Green, Warner, Bulger, Kitna, etc. Martz is such a creative mind, that I’m sure he’ll get Cutler out of the pocket, where he excels.
And a 12-time rec'd comment from Les:
Looks like we are in for ...The Greatest Show on poorly maintained sod.
P.S.D.B makes up for his "D.A. #1" comment by foreseeing the Pace signing:
Does anybody think he might want Orlando Pace playing LT? They do have a history together. I would hope they would keep C. Williams and it would definitely be a mistake but who knows, I just thought about it.
Which led to this fun exchange:
ChiLobo#23: Overreacting just a little? Why is Martz a bad evaluator of talent all of a sudden?
PSDB: Does what I said sound like I'm overreacting? You wanna take this outside?
CL23: Haha... Easy there, champ.
PSDB: I am the champion, my friend.
Sounds like a Rocky/Drago conversation, don't it?
lookingdreadred, for the win:
Omiyale could be a pretty good RT
Backed up by PSDB: True.
And backed up by the venerable Dane Noble:
Omiyale looked a helluva lot better in the last 3-4 games. It just takes reps… lots and lots of live reps, especially when at a new position (and in a new scheme, and with new teammates, etc.).
I think Omiyale will be just fine whether it’s at LG or RT (although I’d like to see him move back to RT and hope that Angelo/ Tice can find a new LG). I’d almost like to see Gesiakob starting at RT over Shaffer.
A CloudyFuture prediction for year one of Martzfense:
Cutler 4000 yards 25 TDs 28 INTs but a probowl berth after 8 QBs in front of him drop out
Olsen to disappear and have his worse season receiving wise
Hester to disappear and wont be able to learn the offense
65 sacks given up by the O line
Survey says: Cutler 3274 passing yards, 23 TD, 16 INT. Olsen beat out his rookie stats by two catches and thirteen yards. Hester was down statwise, but didn't disappear, and the O-line gave up fifty-two sacks. Record: 11-5.
Sam H. will more words of wisdom (that failed to change the Mad Coordinator):
I really hope that Lovie, Jay and/or JA sat down w/ Martz and said "look I get it, you’re an offensive genius, now instead of repeating what you’ve done forever and ever why don’t you utilize the run and the TEs more here in Chicago, or else!"
And the truest statement ever (on Opposite Day) from MidwayMonster54:
Martz has always played to the strengths of his teams..
And about three hundred comments in, things officially go off the rails thanks to Ashley:
I love Ditka's sweatervests! GG wants one, but I haven’t been able to find one that’s a reasonable price. Heck, I’d even where one if it wasn’t too manly. Haha
So our coaching staff is made up of ..... An old bald guy who wears knee high nylons, a huge bubble head with a #2 pencil attached to his ear, and the one guy who, if I read a headline that said "NFL Coach arrested as Serial Killer", the first name I’d come up with is Mike Martz, and they’re being led by a man who’s facial expression hasn’t changed in the last 5 years no matter what the circumstances.
Should be a hell of year.
And this from WisBearsFan34:
I don't care if they dug up Lombardi's cold corpse to be an assistant coach As long as it brings the Bears back to the playoffs…
While the last word goes to Allie, for her positive and upbeat outlook on the Martz hire and what potentially great things could happen from it:
Sure hope they fix the O-line otherwise Jay will be dead by week 3. Not a fan, but whatevs. Hopefully... we can just fire everyone by week 10 and start over. Or something.