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The Bears Den: January 08, 2015 - Postseason Chicago Bears news & notes

Will Josh Morgan be back with the Bears in 2015?

Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Tim Jennings arrested for DUI, speeding - Jeff Dickerson, Michael C. Wright: Corner arrested in Gwinnett County on charges of speeding, DUI and reckless driving.  Official records ... mugshot ... Peggy Kusinski: NFL Sources say Jennings did not fail a breathalyzer test ... [Video] SportsTalk Live.

New GM will be inheriting a far-from-ideal situation - Dan Durkin: Given the sheer number of starters, not just players, the Bears must add, their needs outweigh their available financial resources and the new GM will have to make decisions about Jay Cutler, Brandon Marshall and Jared Allen.

GM, coaching changes could turn Bears 'D' into 3-4 - Moon Mullin: A Ballard-Bowles pairing could see one significant change, in the metamorphosis of the Bears from their long-standard 4-3 defense into a 3-4 scheme.

Follow WCG on Twitter; like us on Facebook (& click on 'Follow').  Fab Five Freddie told me everybody's fly.  Den pic in hi-res.

Chicago Bears' GM, head coach search

Bears interview Ballard, Pace - Larry Mayer: The Bears continued their search for a GM Wednesday, interviewing Chiefs director of player personnel Chris Ballard and Saints director of player personnel Ryan Pace.   Mark PotashDecision could be next.

Chris Ballard knows value of QB - Patrick Finley: It’s not known whether Ballard prefers a game manager to Jay Cutler, but his success with Alex Smith has to influence the discussion. Then again, surround Cutler with the right players, and he might be saved.

Ballard comes with college coaching background - Not-Hub Fishbain: Twenty years ago Chris Ballard was evaluating talent in Texas, helping recruit players for a school that has produced the likes of John Randle and Roberto Garza.

Despite Bears ties, Chris Ballard his own man - Brad Biggs: Perception is Chris Ballard will be an extension of Jerry Angelo and Phil Emery, but the resume of Chiefs director of player personnel has expanded since he left Bears two years ago.

Ballard has strong track record - Bob LeGere: Chris Ballard had a hand in rebuilding a team that went 2-14 in 2012, the year before he arrived. The Chiefs rebounded to go 11-5 in 2013 and 9-7 last season.

Chris Ballard's pros and cons - Steve Rosenbloom: The hope is Ballard knows the reasons the Bears devolved into this mess and knows how to erase the mistakes, and his willingness to walk away from job opportunities makes him willing to tell hard truths to Phillips and McCaskey about the mistakes they’ve made in the past.

[Video] ESPN - Michael C. Wright discusses the team's search for a GM and head coach, with Chris Ballard a favorite for the former.

[Video] SportsTalk Live - Greg Gabriel's thoughts on Bears GM search ... Gabriel's overall impressions of the Bears GM candidates ... Ballard 'a very outstanding evaluator'.

Bowles coaching interview switched to Thursday - Dan Wiederer: Change due to death of the mother of Falcons owner Arthur Blank, the team with which Todd Bowles is now meeting on Saturday.

Forget past ties to the Bears; it's time to hire Mike Shanahan - Rick Morrissey: Even with Ernie Accorsi, the Bears seem to be approaching the search in the same way they have been doing it for decades – by seeking out people looking for a promotion from personnel director or coordinator.  (CBS): Not on Bears’ radar.

NFL GM hire is a leap of faith - Dan Bernstein: NFL GMs just don’t recycle like coaches. If they are good, they stay on the job; if they fail, they are almost always done. These hires are most often a step up into the unknown.

Don't expect Bears to rock the boat with new hires - Jon Greenberg: Real change is still a four-letter word in Lake Forest.


'Worst to first' turnaround for Bears shouldn’t be laughed at - Moon Mullin: Even without Brandon Marshall, who will need to show that he is about winning and not about Brandon Marshall, the offense can't be as bad as it was in 2014, when Marc Trestman made the whole less than the sum of the parts.

Team notes - Dan Wiederer: Tim Jennings stopped going 99 mph in a 65 mph zone, taken in when officer noticed strong smell of alcohol; Bears interview two more GM candidates.

Roster analysis: WRs/TEs - Not-Hub Fishbain: Wideouts didn't meet 2014 expectations, but Martellus Bennett shined.

Bears avoided points-of-emphasis penalties in 2014 - Michael C. Wright: While the Bears struggled on defense in 2014, they did well to avoid being flagged for defensive holding and illegal contact.

Mock Draft - Rob Rang sees the Bears upgrading the pass rush with Kentucky's Alvin "Bud" Dupree, who led all SEC D-linemen with 74 tackles in 2014 and is the conference's reigning career sack leader with 24.5.  Two USA Today mocks: Bears take Landon Collins.

Jameis Winston going pro means nothing for Bears - Michael C. Wright: Bears still have to figure out what to do with Jay Cutler and his large salary.

Polish sausage

The Business of Football - Andrew Brandt: A look at how head coach contracts typically work (players wish they had this kind of security), the unusual case of Doug Marrone, and Chip Kelly’s rise to power in Philly.

A casualty of the NFL Draft - Robert Klemko: After careful consideration, Wyoming QB Brett Smith forwent his senior season and declared for the 2014 draft. Unclaimed and unable to go back to school, his journey highlights a broken process the league is trying to fix.

Know thy enemy: Packers - Michael Silver: How Aaron Rodgers went from laughing stock to playing QB at the highest level the sport has seen.

Know thy enemy: Lions - Michael Rothstein's Lions season report card ... Ten critical moments of Lions' season ... Five issues facing Lions as they enter offseason.