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The Bears Den: May 27, 2013 - Offseason news and notes

Bush. Giggity.

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Sam Greenwood

Ditka's 89 to be last in long line of Bears' retired numbers - Brad Biggs: His will be the 14th put away and George McCaskey says "If there is going to be a last one, there is no more appropriate one."

Dane Noble: #89

Peter King's MMQB - Brian Urlacher's do-it-all skill set on display on one unforgettable night against Arizona. Classic SI photos of #54.

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Urlacher, Lewis broke the mold for prototype inside LBs - Don Banks: Their versatile skill sets came to represent what the league required in the middle of a defense forced to compete in the pass-happy track meet that offenses have morphed into.

Where does Urlacher rank among all-time MLBs? - Moon Mullin: Every coach and opponent game-planned and accounted for him, even when the play was not going into his area... because the entire field was his “area” more than any other MLB.

Steven Schweickert: Urlacher and his identity to the Bears

Urlacher ranks his top five games - Vaughn McClure: Not surprisingly, his lasting memories of Bears career focus on team, not individual accomplishments.

Healing needed for Bears, Urlacher? - Kevin Seifert: Urlacher said "everything is fine" now but reiterated that he didn't appreciate how the Bears handled negotiations. [Video] #54 on walking away from football.

Urlacher never forgot New Mexico roots - Adam L. Jahns: It would take the athletic director hours to explain what Urlacher has done for his high school throughout his career; his former coaches say Chicago never changed him.



Dan Pompei's Bears mailbag - Readers' Q&A about Urlacher, Carimi, Gould, Long and other rookies to watch.

NFCN Blog - Kevin Seifert assesses how each NFC North team looks at RB: "As long as Forte and Bush are healthy, the Bears' relatively thin depth behind them is irrelevant."

T.J. Shouse: Are the Bears TEs & FBs good enough?

NFCN Blog - Kevin Seifert: Alshon Jeffery is one of Matt Bowen's second-yearmen destined for breakout years.



Healing continues as Bears retire Ditka’s No. 89 - Moon Mullin: Friday’s move, coming shortly after Urlacher’s retirement announcement and accompanying conciliatory statements by both sides, brings proper closure to another of the great Chicago careers. Ditka a tough '89' act to follow. Seriously.

In Bears’ world, 99 won’t come after 89 - Adam L. Jahns: “It’s simple math; that’s the glory of actually playing for this franchise,” said Dan Hampton. “I mean, it’s not Seattle, where you’ve got one or two guys who have actually accomplished something.”

Four downs with Ditka - Da Coach blesses we mere mortals with an extra five questions.

Butkus and Ditka both got over estrangement - Fred Mitchell: In time, they both still were devoted to owner George Halas and extremely gratified over their role in Bears history. Kevin Seifert: Ditka credits George McCaskey for peace.

The Super Fans: How ‘Da Coach’ came to be - Moon Mullin: When Ditka was fired in 1992, the Super Fans sent an irate letter to Michael McCaskey, declaring that they were returning things such as their sandwiches from Mike Singletary’s farewell dinner.

The Superfans: The Superfans Predict a Bears vs. Colts Super Bowl

Chicago coaches, managers far less interesting than they used to be - Rick Morrissey: Whether you love Ditka or think his coaching was the reason the Bears didn’t win more Super Bowls, you have to admit the city was much more alive when he was roaming the sidelines or roller skating through Halas Hall.

Daaaa Superfans.


Polish sausage

NFP Sunday Blitz - Dan Pompei: Greatest MLBs ever and some less important stuff from around the NFL.

Know thy enemy: Lions - Dan Hanzus: Jim Schwartz says Ndamukong Suh can step forward to take on a leadership role, but not everyone is convinced it would suit his personality.

Ray Manzarek died last week, aged 74.