All those questions? Answers coming

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All those questions? Answers coming

Phil Emery?Youre up.The Bears' general manager probably knows already what changes he wants to make - or not make from the coaching staff to the roster now that hes had almost a full year under his belt to see what exactly he has. His team became just the second since the playoffs expanded to six teams per conference in 1990 to start 7-1 and fail to make the playoffs. Its the fifth time in six years that Lovie Smiths club has failed to make the postseason. Hes seen the respect the head coach holds in the locker room, but also the consistent failings on the offensive side of the ball that werent any different in Smiths ninth year than the previous eight. That after locking up his star running back and acquiring a top-notch receiver.So does he show the door to the coach of a 10-6 team, or does he give him a last chance with the one year remaining on his contract? Does Smith agree to come back as a lame duck, without the extension, knowing his uncertain future will be a daily question, from mini-camp, and throughout the 2013 season? If thats not good enough for Smith, in which direction does Emery go? If Smith stays, does everyone else on his staff especially the offensive side? Or does Emery keep the status quo, extend no one, and work on simply improving the quality of the roster?What does he do about Brian Urlacher? Is it a different approach if Smith stays, and is Urlacher open to a one-year extension? Or is it now time to search for his successor in this franchises rich tradition at middle linebacker?Like Urlacher, Devin Hesters provided many highlights and thrills for Bears fans. Is that era over? Should it be?Can Jay Cutler find the long-awaited "next level" behind the incentive of playing for another contract next season? Or would the lack of personal long-term security turn into a locker room (and on-field) distraction?When the schedule got tough, the Bears couldnt keep going. Injuries played a part, yes. But when they could regain momentum and deliver knockout punches to the likes of Seattle and Minnesota, they turned into the first blows that eventually knocked these Bears from the playoffs once again.Since this team began sliding down their slippery slope on November 11, these and other questions were asked more frequently, and more loudly. Emery didnt have to answer them until the book finally closed on these 2012 Bears.
It has now.
And the answers will start coming. Some may not be very popular, depending on which side of the arguments youre on. The tough decisions now begin, and well begin to learn more about the man who replaced Jerry Angelo, who so many fans were happy to see shown the door a year ago.

Want to be in on Bears QB deliberations? 'Look at the film'

Want to be in on Bears QB deliberations? 'Look at the film'

Back in 1992 the Dallas Cowboys were in draft deliberations around the No. 17 spot of the first round, looking for upgrades on defense. A scout made a suggestion that they target Ohio State defensive end Alonzo Spellman, one of the most physically imposing (6-4, 280 pounds) players and best athletes in that draft.
 
Coach Jimmy Johnson responded, "Tell me about the production."
 
Came back the answer: Three years at OSU, nine total sacks.
 
"Oh, please!" Johnson scoffed, calling in cornerback Kevin Smith and leaving Spellman to the Bears at No. 22. Spellman had several respectable seasons but never more than 8.5 sacks in nine NFL seasons.
 
As investment advisers counsel, past performance is not necessarily a predictor of future results. But past performance can be, and an axiom in NFL personnel rooms is, look at the film.
 
CSNChicago.com is doing that as the NFL Scouting Combine approaches (Feb. 29) along with free agency and the start of the league year and its trading window. It becomes an increasingly relevant exercise to look at the intricacies behind some of the key players and positions the Bears will be addressing through the upcoming weeks. CSNChicago.com previously looked at the need to evaluate quarterbacks from the intangible standpoints first, then the measurables.
 
Using Jay Cutler as an object lesson for how immense physical skills have questionable correlations to immense NFL performance, a look at one aspect of quarterback "film" warrants more attention than the measurables that command a disproportionate share of attention and scrutiny.
 
Ball security.
 
It has been Cutler's single biggest issue through his eight Bears seasons, was a reason why coaches once wanted to stay with Josh McCown instead of returning to Cutler following a Cutler injury absence, and why Brian Hoyer played his way into prominence in the discussion of 2017 Bears plans. Adam Gase went from offensive coordinator to hottest head-coach prospect in no small measure because he managed Cutler into better ball security.

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But the point here is less Cutler – expected to be traded or released within the near future – than the level of ball security in the available options beyond Hoyer.
 
So, look at the film:
 
The widespread drooling over a possible trade with New England for Jimmy Garoppolo. The best thing in Garoppolo's favor is that he has been a Patriots backup to Tom Brady. Garoppolo, drawing distant comparisons to a Matt Flynn, Matt Cassel and other past experience-lite quarterback options, has thrown 94 NFL passes without an interception, which is impressive until matched against Hoyer's 200 last season without an interception, for comparison purposes.
 
But evaluating Garoppolo against the coming chief draft competition – DeShone Kizer, Mitch Trubisky, Deshaun Watson – suggests comparing apples to apples, meaning college ball security, since that's all the kids have to this point.
 
Garoppolo vaulted up draft boards (to New England's second round) on the strength of an Eastern Illinois senior season with 53 touchdown passes vs. nine interceptions, against chiefly FCS opposition. But in his first three seasons Garoppolo threw for 65 touchdowns and was intercepted 42 times.
 
Kizer? In his two Notre Dame seasons, 47 touchdowns, 19 interceptions.
 
Trubisky? 30 touchdowns last season, six interceptions. Including his two years as a North Carolina backup, 41 touchdowns, 10 interceptions.
 
Watson? 90 touchdowns, 32 interceptions in three Clemson seasons, the last two as Tigers starter.
 
Observations:
 
Garoppolo put in four college seasons, but has a little of the Trubisky/Flynn/Cassel, one-year-wonder feel. 
 
Kizer and Watson have more starting seasons, but the Watson intangible of getting his team to two national-championship games speaks to another level of "intangible."
 
GM Ryan Pace will incorporate heavy input from coach John Fox and coordinator Dowell Loggains. Coaches love ball security. Garoppolo? Watson? Trubisky? Kizer?
 
Look at the film.

BearsTalk Podcast: The risk and reward for Bears in trading for Jimmy Garoppolo

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USA TODAY

BearsTalk Podcast: The risk and reward for Bears in trading for Jimmy Garoppolo

In this edition of the BearsTalk podcast, CSN's Chris Boden, Sun-Times Bears beat writer Patrick Finley, and CSNChicago.com's Scott Krinch discuss the Bears' approach to the two-week window opening to franchise-tag Alshon Jeffery again, the risk/reward in trading for Jimmy Garoppolo or drafting a QB (and how high to draft one), Scott's 2.0 mock draft, plus the workers' compensation controversy the team found itself in last week and the club's decision to raise ticket prices.

Listen to the full episode at this link or in the embedded player below: