The Bears started their offseason program on Monday with a view towards New Orleans, the site of Super Bowl XLVII. Lovie Smith talked about validating careers with this season:
“I talked about some of the special guys that we had in the room and [how] sometimes in order to really validate some careers of the great players we have, you have to finish up with the ring,” Smith said. “That’s what it’s all about.
“We talked to them about the group and how special it was and that we’re capable of doing that. We talked about having our best group of men this time of year all assembled together.”
I think these comments signal that Lovie sees the window closing for some of the defensive stalwarts like Urlacher, Briggs and Peppers. Put a ring on those players and you’ve got sure-fire Hall of Famers. Without some hardware, it’s not a slam dunk.
Lovie also needs to validate his own career. He’s one of the longest tenured coaches in the NFC and he’s missing a ring too. Tom Coughlin, who was hired by the Giants the same year as Lovie signed on with the Bears, just added another ring with the G-Men. Think that’s gone unnoticed by Lovie? Fat chance.
Lastly, Lovie knows all too well that there’s a new GM in town and nothing beyond this coming season is promised. It’s an odd sense of mortality that Lovie has faced before. He’s met the challenge in the past with an added sense of intensity and accountability that led to deep playoff runs.
The Bears released a propaganda video to go along with the start of offseason program. Give it a spin after the jump.
A couple of quick comments on the video. Someone trim Roberto Garza’s eyebrows. They scare the crap out of me. And while you’ve got the clippers out, isn’t it time to cut Craig Steltz’s hair? He always looks like an extra from Point Break whenever I see him.