8:27 AM CST, January 16, 2013
Is Marc Trestman the right guy to coach the Bears?
I mean, the Bears still don’t know if Emery is the right guy to be general manager, especially after the Bears retarded Emery’s plan by forcing him to keep Lovie Smith as coach. A year later, Emery fired Smith and selected a coach who hasn’t been in the NFL in eight years and has spent the last part of his life coaching in the Canadian Football League.
The Bears won’t know if Emery and Trestman are the right guys until they actually do their jobs for a while. But say this for Emery: He knew the offense stunk, he said he would work to fix it in his first coaching hire, and he has made a choice that speaks directly to stench.
Funny thing is, Trestman almost worked for the Bears last decade. Smith considered Trestman as offensive coordinator, but ultimately chose -- ta-da! -- Terry Shea, who would be the first of many offensive coordinators that Smith would fire until it finally caught up with him and resulted in his own waxing.
Trestman coached the ungainly Bernie Kosar in both college and the pros, first as a member of tweeting master Jimmy Johnson’s University of Miami staff and then with the Cleveland Browns.
Trestman would later run up some big numbers with Steve Young in San Francisco, and coached and coaxed big seasons out of Scott Mitchell in Detroit and Rich Gannon in Oakland, the latter winning the MVP award.
Trestman coordinated the offense that drove the Raiders to the Super Bowl, and while I assume that deposed head coach Jon Gruden built that offense, Gruden was gone before that season.
So, a quarterback oracle comes in as head coach. Jay Cutler, class is in session, and here’s your offseason syllabus:
“Mental Makeup 202’’
“Emotional Approach 500’’
Clearly this is a Cutler-driven hire, not a day-care temp the way Jeremy Bates seemed to be. But here’s the thing: Trestman can’t be here just to solve the Cutler enigma. Sure, that’s where it all starts, but there’s a bigger, more important question:
How did an offense that gave Cutler a lot of what he wanted end up worse than ever?
Cutler not only gained old friend Bates as a personal quarterback wrangler, but also escaped the seeming death march of offensive coordinator Mike Martz and was reunited with Pro Bowl receiver Brandon Marshall.
And the Bears offense scored three touchdowns in a game once in the last two months of the season.
The forfeiture of the tight end position remains an issue. For further details see last weekend’s playoff games. Good teams stock that position and use it in the middle of the field.
The offensive line remains an issue. It got better as the season went on, but looked nothing like the teams that played last weekend and the ones that get to play this one and beyond.
Pick it apart all you want, assess blame however you will, but the whole thing is as vexing now as it was when it was happening. I couldn’t understand then. I still don’t. The Bears offense should’ve been better. Instead, it got worse. Why?
Maybe that was the big question in the interview process and maybe Trestman answered it better than Bruce Arians and Darell Bevell.
Even if it wasn’t asked and answered, that in fact is the big question. The only question.
Why did the Bears offense get worse?
Emery left the country to find the guy capable of answering that question on the field. If Trestman can do it, he goes from quarterback guru to genius.
If not, then keep that passport handy, mon ami.
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