Who needs HBO’s Hard Knocks when the Chicago Bears have their own version – Hard Knox. Wide receive Johnny Knox was at the center of the storm today that ended with wide receivers coach Daryl Drake going on a rant that ranks among the best in Chicago sports. It’s not Lee Elia-worthy, but it’s up there. Let’s get up to speed before we listen to the tape.
With Knox behind Roy Williams on the Bears depth chart, Mike Martz told reporters what we all saw last year – Johnny Knox needs to get better. It was a common theme last year, where Johnny seemed to get beat on plays that led to numerous Cutler interceptions. Maybe he was in over his head last year? Maybe he just needs to get more consistent as Martz suggested.
In the story about Knox, Brad Biggs cited a source that basically indicated that Knox would seek a trade:
If he can’t displace Williams for the Sept. 11 opener against the Falcons, there’s a better than fair chance he will push for a new home, according to a source.
That paragraph grew legs and by Thursday morning was a full-blown trade rumor. That didn’t sit well with Bears wide receivers coach Daryl Drake, who had Johnny’s back to say the least. If you don’t believe me, have a listen because the words on the screen don’t do Drake’s rant justice. (Click the link)
I’m not sure if that’s like a protective father instinct kicking in for Drake or if he’s just fed up with his wide receiver group being one of the most maligned position groups this side of the Mississippi, but whatever it is, he was fuming. The reporter that he went all Colonel Jessup on was Rick Morrisey, Biggs’ former colleague from the Sun Times.
I’ll say this – if Biggs wrote that Knox wanted to be traded, he had word from a reliable source that Knox had said he wanted to be traded. Biggs doesn’t need to make stuff up; he’s widely regarded as one of the absolute best in the business.
By the end of the day, Knox had formally denied the trade rumors and Daryl Drake’s blood pressure dropped back within a normal range (we hope), while Rick Morrisey was still looking for the license plate of the truck that ran him over.
Here’s my editorial for Johnny Knox: Go out and earn your playing time on this football team son. We now live in a society where every kid gets a trophy for participation. God forbid anyone gets their feelings hurt. In life there are winners and losers. There are people out there who are better or have put their time in and get their shot ahead of yours. Yes, Johnny led the Bears in receptions last season, but you don’t win a starting spot with that tallest midget award. If he wants to start, go and beat out one of your teammates, whether it’s Williams or Hester or Bennett.