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The Ryan Pace Bracket Challenge: Management 2 vs 7

The offseason series continues, this time looking at defensive difference makers and wide receivers. How do the best and worst moves of Chicago’s GMs compare?

NFL: DEC 16 Bears at Lions Photo by Patrick Gorski/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

With a 42-54 (<44%) winning record, Ryan Pace has attracted a lot of critics. With the Beloved making it to the playoffs two of the last three years, he has attracted a lot of defenders. With that in mind, we are looking at Pace’s successes and failures equally. Today we move back over to the operational side of the job, focusing on a Front-7 disruptor at #2 either way and on offensive weapons at #7.

If you want to catch up, here are the articles to date:

Just a quick reminder of how it works—each day at 1pm, a new face-off will appear. Fans will have 48 hours to vote. Those results will decide which move “wins” and advances. For the operational moves, the contenders today are as follows:

Best

#2: Signing Akiem Hicks - it seems tough to believe now, but Hicks had trouble establishing himself as a starter at his previous stops. He was a rotational piece with potential. Since coming to Chicago, he has been a mainstay of the defense.

#7: Trading Martellus Bennett - when Bennett was traded, there were fans who were upset about it, and there were more fans who felt that while the move was warranted, Pace didn’t get enough compensation (Bennett and a 6th-rounder became a 4th-rounder). Ultimately, though, Bennett had trouble staying on one team once being moved. He was certainly a malcontent while on the team, and that made this a move for team unity.

Worst

#2: Signing Robert Quinn - Quinn was supposed to provide the Bears with a second pass-rushing option beyond Mack, but he has thus far been unimpressive. Instead, his contract makes him impossible to move (as a trade or a cut) and his contributions are meager.

#7: The 2017 Free Agent and trade receiver class - Where to begin? Kendall Wright? Dontrelle Inman? Markus Wheaton? It doesn’t matter if Pace intended on Glennon or Trubisky starting, the group he assembled to catch passes in 2017 was so putrid that the top two receivers in the class together did not hit a thousand yards, and the version of Josh Bellamy with a 52.5% catch rate was the second-leading receiver on the whole team.

Poll

Which was the better operational move?

This poll is closed

  • 96%
    #2: Signing Akiem Hicks
    (532 votes)
  • 3%
    #7: Trading Martellus Bennett
    (18 votes)
550 votes total Vote Now

Poll

Which was the worse operational move?

This poll is closed

  • 38%
    #2: Signing Robert Quinn
    (213 votes)
  • 61%
    #7: Assembling the 2017 receiver corps
    (336 votes)
549 votes total Vote Now