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Hot Take Tuesday: It’s so hard to say goodbye

The incoherent ramblings of a belligerent Bears fan

Chicago Bears v Cleveland Browns Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images

In about twenty minutes, the Chicago Bears season went from hopeful to terminated.

Before those twenty minutes, the Bears were a team on the cusp of winning their third in a row, in a position to extend that winning streak to five, and look to start saving the jobs of Matt Eberflus and Justin Fields and completely change the outlook on the 2024 offseason.

Twenty minutes.

But twenty minutes later, the Chicago Bears had blown another double-digit fourth-quarter lead, their head coach made a few mind-boggling calls, their offensive coordinator let down his unit, and the quarterback failed on two different opportunities to get the Bears back into the game.

In twenty minutes this team went from a playoff hopeful to a team destined for major changes at season’s end. Perhaps decisions were already made, and the outcome of this game doesn’t matter, but that’s hard to imagine with so much on the line.

Will Kevin Warren and Ryan Poles come to these same conclusions? It’s hard for me to imagine them coming to a different interpretation of these results.

So goodbye to you, Matt Eberflus. We will remember your HITS principles (but mostly “the ball”), we will remember you piloting the ship to the number one pick in 2022, we will remember your choppy press conferences where the issues with the losses were always execution and rarely on the coaches. It wasn’t all bad, we will remember that you kept the locker room together and kept fans' hopes from crashing this year, we will remember that when Montez Sweat arrived, the two of you turned this defense around. We will always wonder what you had up your sleeve on that Thursday night. We will remember the good, but we, as Bears fans, always remember the bad. And in the end, we will remember that while some of your tenure was good, it will be remembered for being not quite good enough. We bid you adieu, Matt Eberflus.

Goodbye to you, Luke Getsy. We will remember you mashing your Madden controller and running the same plays over and over again, we will remember you trying to force the square peg that is Justin Fields into the round hole that is your offense, we will remember Cris Collinsworth saying that Justin Fields could learn some things from Tyson Bagent and wonder if it was you who fed him that, we will remember your lack of in-game adjustments, your obsession with screens and some bizarre 3rd and short and 4th and short calls that you insisted on running. But it wasn’t all bad, Luke Getsy. We will remember you unleashing Justin Fields onto the NFL in 2022: nobody knew just how explosive he was until you showed the world. We will remember some solid play designs that weren’t executed by the quarterback, we will remember some of the great plays, like the DJ Moore QB keeper against Detroit. But most of all, we will remember the hope that we had in you, as fans in 2022, but that hope failed to materialize into anything in 2023 that could be built upon in 2024. We bid you farewell, Luke Getsy.

And now, for the toughest one. We say goodbye to you, Justin Fields. We will remember the hope you brought the entire city in April of 2021. We will remember the hope we had for you that entire offseason. We will remember questioning why Matt Nagy wouldn’t give you an opportunity in training camp, and we will remember how Nagy destroyed your first career start with that horrendous game plan. We will remember that second half against the Steelers or the Packers game that year, when we saw you growing into an NFL quarterback. We will remember you exploding onto the NFL scene with those incredible games in 2022. We will remember the Houdini escape acts in the backfield, we will remember the explosive 60-yard touchdown runs and knowing that we, as Bears fans, had something that nobody else in the NFL did.

But we will remember the roller coasters, we will remember the highs of games like the Washington Commanders game this year, but the lows like the following week against the Minnesota Vikings. We will remember the impossible plays, but the lack of execution of the very possible plays. We will remember wanting more, we will remember hoping for more, but we will remember, in the end that Ryan Poles is going to make a business decision.

In a way, Justin, the conclusion of your Chicago Bears career will mimic your entire career in Chicago. And that is that it was unfair. Life isn’t fair, and there’s no better example in sports than your career in Chicago. You didn’t have an opportunity to remotely succeed until year three. In a year where most QBs are coming into their own, you, in a way, were just getting started. Your next team will be our second favorite team. We wish you nothing but success. You will always be a part of Bears Nation, and you will always leave us wondering what you could have been in Chicago, if the Bears franchise didn’t fail you. Godspeed, Justin Fields. Godspeed.

Quick Hits

  • Justin Jones was in coverage on David Njoku’s 3rd and 15 conversion. I know you probably all know this by now, but I had to type it to help me believe that it actually happened.
  • I was hoping Eddie Jackson scored on that interception. It felt like the last one of his Chicago Bears career. Would have been nice to see him cross the goal line one more time.
  • Montez Sweat. That is all.
  • Ryan Poles could go pursue a huge 3-tech in free agency like Chris Jones, but it’s going to be really hard to let Justin Jones walk the way he has played down the stretch.
  • Nobody has benefited more from Montez Sweat’s arrival in Chicago than DeMarcus Walker and Tremaine Edmunds.
  • Cleveland’s pass rush is excellent, but you have to wonder how much worse the Bears OLine was without Teven Jenkins.
  • Khalil Herbert continues to not be the same player since his return from injury. It may not be a bad idea to shut him down for the year.
  • Same goes for Nate Davis. His play has been poor since his return and you have to figure that high-ankle sprain is still impacting him.
  • Darnell Mooney might be the most disappointing player on the 2023 roster.
  • The Bears need another receiving threat at tight end, whether that be Brock Bowers or an add in free agency.
  • No Hot Take Tuesday next week. Happy Holidays, Bears fans and we will see you again in 2024!