Do you remember when you were in junior high (or maybe middle school for some of you playa playas out there) and there was this girl that you liked but were too shy to talk to? Do you remember getting a note like this one passed to you? On ESPN 1000’s airwaves yesterday, free agent wide receiver Plaxico Burress essentially checked the YES box for the Bears but they’re basically checking the NO box or at best the MAYBE box. Why aren’t they reciprocating the love? Check out some of the reasons I’ve heard for why the Bears wouldn’t/shouldn’t go after Plaxico in bold and my take on those arguments below.
“We like our wide receivers”
Is there a reason why the Bears keep trying to convince us that they don’t need a wide receiver? Has the collection of Devin Hester, Johnny Knox and Earl Bennett done anything to inspire confidence that they can suddenly emerge as the game changers that Jay Cutler needs to succeed. I distinctly remember Jay Cutler’s very first pre-season game as a Bear when he tried to throw a “go up and get it” ball to Devin Hester but realized he’s not a “go up and get it” kind of receiver. If the Bears like their wide receivers, they’re the only ones.
“Plaxico Hasn’t Played Football in Two Years”
The best quote I heard from Plax in his interview with Waddle and Silvy was “I haven’t gotten any smaller.” Plax knows his role as a big target and has the experience to get the job done. All this guy has had to do over the last couple of years is work out. How did Michael Vick look after spending some time in the grey bar motel?
I’m not convinced I believe in the whole rehabilitation idea of prison. It’s like Andy Dufresne said in Shawshank, he had to go to prison to learn how to be a crook. Plax went to jail for being an idiot. I don’t think he was a bad guy; at least not more than any other prima donna, top caliber wide receiver.
Besides the off the field character questions, you might hear some rumblings about locker room, on field questions. He’s the flip side – I like a guy who is motivated. I like a guy with something to prove. Plaxico will be out to make a point and I’d like to be on his side of the argument.
“Plaxico is Too Old” and/or “The Bears need to get younger”
Yes, Plaxico is about to turn 34. Yes, when some players cross into the dreaded mid-30’s, they can start to fall off tremendously. That’s especially true of running backs and guys who take a beating for a living. With 2 years off, he’s been spared 2 years worth of beatings. You know who else is 34? Brian Urlacher, the guy who our defense couldn’t live without last season. While it’s true that the Bears defense needs to find the Fountain of Youth, the offense needs some veteran leadership, particularly in the wide receiver room.
“The Bears might be interested if he comes cheap”
The Bears will have plenty of cash to spend in Free Agency, so why not spend some of it to fill one of their most glaring needs? If he’s interested in playing here, and called the Bears one of his Top 3 choices, the Bears would be foolish not to pick up the phone.