View from the Moon: The Bears' draft gaffe


View from the Moon: The Bears' draft gaffe

Friday, April 29, 2011
Posted: 10:36 a.m.

By John Mullin

Bears grab Carimi in first round
Carimi draft capsule
Full Round 1 results
Complete Bears NFL draft coverage

Expect the aftershocks to the botched non-trade with the Baltimore Ravens to continue reverberating for some time, whether qualitative, quantitative or both.

The Bears embarrassed themselves and threw the late first round of the NFLs offseason showcase into chaos when they made an apparent deal with the Baltimore Ravens and respected GM Ozzie Newsome. The transaction was the Bears giving the Ravens the Chicago pick in the fourth round for the right to move up from No. 29 to Baltimores spot at No. 26.

But confusion over who was to call the Ravens and confirm left Newsome waiting and the Baltimore turn expired without a pick being made. Kansas City (No. 27) then got to the podium with their card and Baltimore was relegated to one spot later. The draft ground to a confusing halt, Baltimore management was livid, and Bears GM Jerry Angelo needed to offer public and private apologies for the mishandling.

The league was looking into the situation in the aftermath.

The Ravens still got the player they wanted with Colorado cornerback Jimmy Smith and the Bears still got Wisconsin tackle Gabe Carimi, the object of their pursuit.

Troublesome questions
But whether the Bears are given any sort of penalty does not obscure some difficult questions.

First was the situation in the Bears draft room, which was operating with Angelo and player personnel director Tim Ruskell, a long-time Angelo associate brought in to revamp various aspects of the personnel operations. Whether Angelo or Ruskell should have made the confirming call to Baltimore is a concern, whether Ruskell didnt get it done or if he re-delegated the task, whatever time was short in a critical situation and something broke down.

Perhaps even more concerning, however, is why the trade was even happening in the first place.

Be in no doubt: A fourth-round pick is significant. Alex Brown, Todd Johnson, Ian Scott, Nathan Vasher, Kyle Orton, Jamar Williams, Henry Melton, D.J. Moore, Corey Wootton. All were fourth rounders, all were players who mattered or matter at various times.

But back to the draft situation:

Baltimore (No. 26) wasnt taking Carimi. Thats why they were willing to deal out of the spot. Kansas City (No. 27) jumped in when Baltimore hesitated and took Pitt receiver Jonathan Baldwin, so the Chiefs werent after Carimi.

New England already had taken tackle Nate Solder at No. 17, so the Patriots werent after Carimi. And the Patriots traded out of the spot, dealing the pick to New Orleans, which was moving up to take Alabama running back Mark Ingram. So the Saints werent after Carimi.

So why were the Bears close to giving up a draft choice of consequence when they apparently didnt have to? Teams do mock drafts to cover myriad scenarios and those can be complicated, given misdirections, misinformation and all the rest.

Homework missing?

But if the Bears were ready to deal away a draft choice for a player that was going to come to them anyway, the matter of who was supposed to call the Ravens becomes less troubling than how thorough was the homework done on what was happening around the Bears pick.

Mississippi State tackle Derek Sherrod also was on the draft board, eventually going No. 32 to Green Bay. Sherrod was not as highly rated as Carimi but was in that group of first rounders that the Bears saw. So even had Carimi been taken, the Bears were in position to still land their tackle.

The NFL is unlikely to deprive the Bears of a pick. The Bears could do a make-good move of some sort, perhaps giving the Ravens a switch of position at some point, possibly giving Baltimore a pick for a move in a later round.

But some qualitative scar tissue may linger. What will the reaction be if the phone rings in a teams draft room now and someone answers, then tells the room, Hey, its the Bears calling.

John "Moon" Mullin is's Bears Insider, and appears regularly on Bears Postgame Live and Chicago Tribune Live. Follow Moon on Twitter for up-to-the-minute Bears information.

Bears shift Pernell McPhee from PUP onto active roster

Bears shift Pernell McPhee from PUP onto active roster

GREEN BAY, Wisc. – In one of the few recent positive personnel developments for a beleaguered Bears team, linebacker Pernell McPhee was moved from his physically unable to perform status onto the active roster on Thursday.

The team waived fullback Paul Lasike to open a spot on the 53-man roster for McPhee, who has been working his way back from offseason knee surgery and only began practicing last Friday.

McPhee being active for the Green Bay game was still unknown mid-afternoon, and the outside linebacker has had just two practice sessions plus the team’s walk-through on Wednesday.

But McPhee was voted as one of the defensive co-captains and universally considered one of the emotional leaders on a team that has taken emotional hits for much of this season. Additionally, McPhee projects to provide a major lift for a spotty pass rush, although how soon he will be able to contribute in more than selected situation remains to play out.

[SHOP: Gear up Bears fans!]

McPhee is not expected to play the majority of opponent’s snaps in whichever game he makes his return.

McPhee has appeared in 74 games over five seasons with the Ravens (2011-14) and Bears (2015), starting 18 contests, posting 155 tackles, 23 sacks, one interception, 10 pass breakups, four forced fumbles and one fumble recovery. He also owns one blocked field goal on special teams.

McPhee set career highs in tackles (64) and interceptions (one) in his first season as a Bear in 2015. He also ranked third on the Bears in sacks (six) and tied for second in tackles for a loss (10) in 2015. He helped the Ravens to a Super Bowl Championship after the 2012 season, posting four tackles, one sack, two pass breakups, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery during the playoff run.

Former Bears Punky QB Jim McMahon wants Arizona to legalize marijuana

Former Bears Punky QB Jim McMahon wants Arizona to legalize marijuana

If it were up to Jim McMahon, marijuana would be legal in the state of Arizona.

The former Super Bowl-winning Bears quarterback is set to appear in a commercial on "Thursday Night Football" in which he encourages the people of Arizona to vote yes on Prop 205. By doing so, the recreational use of marijuana would be legal in the state.

McMahon, who holds an Arizona medical marijuana card, is an advocate for the recreational use of the drug as it's helped him treat pain from his 15-year NFL career.

[SHOP: Gear up Bears fans!]

Check out McMahon's ad that will appear in Thursday's Bears-Packers game in the video below: