Halas Hall isn’t exactly known for coloring outside the lines.
In "importing" new head coach Marc Trestman from the Canadian Football League’s Montreal Alouettes, Bears GM Phil Emery isn’t just thinking outside the box, he’s busting the whole thing wide open. Trestman becomes the Bears’ 14th head coach after winning two Grey Cups in Canada (that’s their Lombardi Trophy, for those not up to speed on Canadian Football League terminology).
That got me thinking: If Chicago is going to import things from Canada to help improve the Bears, why stop at Trestman? Here’s a sampling of other things the Bears could do to ease the transition from Montreal to Michigan Avenue for their head coach.
Poutine at Soldier Field
Perhaps the most famous dish to come out of Canada is poutine, essentially French fries topped with gravy and cheese curds. I know what you’re thinking, but trust me, don’t knock it till you’ve tried it. It’s a dish that has enjoyed a surge in popularity in Chicago, so much so that Bad Happy Poutine recently became the first restaurant selling primarily poutine to open within the city limits. If we’re hiring a CFL coach, what better way to honor him than by adding Canada’s favorite drunk food option to the Soldier Field concessions?
Convince Jay Cutler the NFL Has Gone to Three Downs Instead of Four
In the CFL, you get only three downs. The Bears haven’t played with a real sense of urgency on offense since the Walter Payton era, and maybe that’s because they’ve got three downs before they have to punt instead of two. Playing with the urgency of having one fewer down to get the offense right would be entertaining if nothing else and could make for a more explosive offense.
Be More Polite
Crowds at Soldier Field are known for being a lot of things, but being polite ain’t one of them. Canadians, on the other hand, are some of the nicest, most humble human beings you could ever hope to meet. Here’s hoping Bears fans excited about Trestman’s hiring take a cue from his fans up north, adopting a sense of decorum that will make Soldier Field rowdy but still well-behaved.
We’re not saying the soundtrack at Soldier Field has been lacking in recent years but … yeah, it could use some punching up. Fortunately, Canada’s got a number of fantastic bands that can bring the party to the stands here in Chicago. Start with some classic Rush to appeal to the older crowd, throw in some Arcade Fire and up-and-comers The Reason for the younger crowd and you’ve got a game-day mixtape even noted sourpuss Brian Urlacher can love.
Matt Lindner is a RedEye special contributor.
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