Now player proves the incompetence of Bear GM Jerry Angelo more completely than Michael Turner.
Turner played High School ball at North Chicago. He played College ball at Northern Illinois. Both a stone's throw from Bear Headquarters in Lake Forest, Illinois.
But Angelo proved the best place to hide talent was in Jerry's lap.
How did Turner ever last 5 rounds and 154 picks in the NFL draft ? He played at Northern Illinois, a stone's throw from chicago.
In the 5th round that year Angelo selected Claude Harriot from Pittsburgh and Craig Krenzel from Ohio State.
He didn't need to scout turner he was in his back yard ! And he chose Harriot and Krenzel. Round 4 brought Nathan Vasher and Leon Joe.
(That 2004 draft was one of Angelo's best, bringing in Tommie Harris, Tank Johnson, Bernard Berrian and Nathan Vasher...of course only Harris remains in Chicago...and Harris, despite the love of Bear fans, was outperformed by the much maligned Tommie Kelly of the Raiders. Harris had an additional half sack, Kelly had an additional 22 tackles.)
The next season Angelo still felt compelled to fix the RB situation spending the 4th overall pick on Cedric Benson. To make sure that draft was a total loss he followed the Benson pick with WR Mark Bradley from Oklahoma. The 4th round pick stuck, Kyle Orton. In the 5th Airese Curry came on board. He got a steal in the 6th in Chris Harris ( a safety that showed such promise that he was traded for an 5th round draft pick). Round 7 yielded Rod Wilson.
Compare a pre-draft Benson and a pre-draft Turner, you see Turner was a faster back, a bigger back, a fresher back with fewer carries but he played in Angelo's back yard and Jerry couldn't see any of that.
Out in that same back yard blocking for Michael Turner was a 4 year starter named Doug Free. Nicknamed Doug Freak. He started 2 games at TE as a Frosh, then moved to T and never left. Free started for Turner's best two college seasons. He then blocked for Garrett Wolfe while Wolfe broke Turner's records. Somehow Wolfe (5'7" 180lbs) was more valuable to Jerry Angelo than Turner or the 6'6" 311lb Free. Free would have started in Chicago last year. But instead he backed up former bear Marco Colombo in Dallas.
Bear Fans will tell you that Benson was the missing piece that sent Chicago to the super bowl. That Angelo's shrewd drafts made that 1 and done run possible.
I'm not buying it. 2006 was a fluke. The Bears were a good team and a lucky team in a weak division.
I want Monsters of the Midway. Bear Fans remember Hampton, Dent, McMichael, Perry, Harris, Hartenstine, Osborne...at their best I'll take any one of them or any set of them over the bears current crop. Today's Linebackers are different than the Marshall, Singletary, Otis Wilson days. I do love me some Doug Buffone. I'll take the old days. I hear alot of talk about safety - but give me Plank and Fencik any day. Or Todd Bell. Or Shaun Gayle.
And most of those guys were brought in by 1 GM.
Today's GM couldn't hold a candle to him.