Blog Entry

Bears fire GM Jerry Angelo, Lovie 'will remain'

Posted on: January 3, 2012 10:19 am
Edited on: January 3, 2012 2:20 pm
Chicago has decided to move on from GM Jerry Angelo.(US PRESSWIRE)

By Will Brinson

Earlier in the year, there were rumors that Bears general manager Jerry Angelo might retire at the end of 2011. He laughed at those rumors then, but probably isn't laughing on Tuesday, as the Bears have relieved Angelo of his duties effectively immediately.

The team announced that news on Tuesday morning, confirming reports from Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune and Sean Jensen of the Chicago Sun-Times. The team later updated their press release to read that "Lovie Smith will remain."

A source tells's Mike Freeman that the reason for making the move is simple: "the organization was growing stale."

Black Monday

The big question is how many people in the organization this will affect. Freeman heard that Lovie might be 'in a bit of trouble,' and even though Smith "will remain" he still can't feel completely safe within the organization, particularly since a new general manager isn't typically inclined to love a previous coach.

Smith received a two-year extension after last season, taking him through the 2013 season. The Bears also said that Lovie "will continue to evaluate his coaching staff," which means if he does stay, he'll see significant pressure as he heads into the "year before the lame-duck year" portion of his contract.

Meanwhile, one of the league's most scrutinized offensive coordinators, Mike Martz, has resigned for "philosophical differences" according to the Chicago Tribune's Dan Pompei. (Martz's contract expired Sunday so, technically, he didn't resign so much as say, "If you're planning on giving me a new deal just know that I ain't coming back. And that's doubly true if you were going to tell me to beat it.") On Monday, Smith was noncommittal about Martz's future with the team and now we know why. 

Two guys that should be happy with this news? Jay Cutler and Matt Forte. Cutler because the new offensive coordinator might be interested in fitting the scheme to his best player. And Forte because he could be more likely to get a new deal from the Bears under a new front office than he was from Angelo.

Angelo became Bears GM in 2001, fired Dick Jauron in 2003 and hired Lovie, who's 71-57 under Angelo (Angelo's teams were 95-81 overall) including one trip to the Super Bowl and a slew of dominant defenses.

But the Bears were exposed by injuries in 2011: when Jay Cutler and Matt Forte went down, it became clear that Chicago hadn't properly allocated assets to create depth on the offensive front. Chicago lost five of their last six games after a hot start had them in control of a wild-card spot and nipping at the undefeated Packers heels in the NFC North.

Angelo dealt with contract issues surrounding both Lance Briggs (twice now!) and Forte (the infamous "pay the man" debate) and doesn't exactly have a history of slam-dunking first-round picks. Pardon the list, but from 2001 to 2011 the Bears drafted the following players in the first round of the NFL Draft: David Terrell (8), Marc Colombo (29), Michael Hayes (14), Rex Grossman (22), Tommie Harris (14), Cedric Benson (4), Greg Olsen (31), Chris Williams (14) and Gabe Carimi (29).

Three times -- thrice! -- in that span, the Bears didn't have a first-round pick, although two of them were used to acquire quarterback Jay Cutler.

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Since: Oct 16, 2011
Posted on: January 4, 2012 1:56 am

Bears fire GM Jerry Angelo, Lovie 'will remain'

I like Lovie Smith, but I don't see how hiring a new GM and retaining the head coach is going to work.  Does anyone know a situation where a new GM and an existing head coached stayed resulting in a positive outcome?  Good luck Bears fans.  Getting a new offensive coordinator should help, but who is going to select him?  The new GM or Lovie?
Since: Jan 4, 2012
Posted on: January 4, 2012 1:23 am
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator

Since: Nov 17, 2009
Posted on: January 4, 2012 1:05 am

Bears fire GM Jerry Angelo, Lovie 'will remain'

xy74, what do you mean a "defensive minded coach won't cut it"? San Francisco (this year), Ravens, Steelers, Jets (made it to two AFC championship games with a top 3 defense both years). Defense means nothing if you can't move the chains on offense and put up points (see the Houston Texans).

Since: Aug 16, 2006
Posted on: January 4, 2012 1:02 am

Bears fire GM Jerry Angelo, Lovie 'will remain'

Speeder, you're an idiot!  Pretty much all there is to say.

Since: Jan 4, 2012
Posted on: January 4, 2012 1:01 am

Bears fire GM Jerry Angelo, Lovie 'will remain'

@speeder.  Damn shame the North didn't finish what it started.  One more cracker from texas.  Not even worthy of a capital T.  Clean that inbred state up and Nuke'em already.

Since: Apr 20, 2007
Posted on: January 4, 2012 12:29 am

Martz pulls a Cutler....

Martz did what Jay Cutler knows best......How to QUIT on his team!  Quitcago has another team in its arsenal of losing organizations!  Horrible City, Horrible Teams, Horrible People!  Ha Ha Ha! 

Since: Aug 12, 2008
Posted on: January 4, 2012 12:04 am

Bears fire GM Jerry Angelo, Lovie 'will remain'

Ummmmmm martz didnt quit...he got the boot!

Since: Oct 20, 2011
Posted on: January 3, 2012 11:27 pm

Bears fire GM Jerry Angelo, Lovie 'will remain'

As a Bears fan I think that Lovie has pretty much gotten the most of of his talent.  No line, no Wrs, aging defense, and they were 7-3 before Cutler went down.  They have no depth because Angelo has consistently misfired on drafts the last 4 years.  Look at the Packers, they build every year through the draft and have guys to step in when injuries happen.  Thats the GMs job and we need a talent evaluater to turn it around. 

Since: Oct 10, 2009
Posted on: January 3, 2012 11:26 pm

Bears fire GM Jerry Angelo, Lovie 'will remain'

Houston has a better defense but not by as much as the stats indicate. Houston had 1/4 of their schedule against the Colts and Jacksonville, whereas the Bears had 1/4 of their schedule against GB and Detroit.

Since: Apr 4, 2009
Posted on: January 3, 2012 11:13 pm

Bears fire GM Jerry Angelo, Lovie 'will remain'

Is it permissible that the NFL would grant Jerry Jones (Dallas Cowboys) the possibility to become another team's GM?  After all, he couldn't do much worse in Chicago : no QB, hurt RB, iffy coach...shades of his own team...

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