George Halas, Chicago Bears founder, player, coach, owner, and legend. AP Photo/Larry Stoddard
We had so much fun doing our Countdown to Kickoff series last season that we decided to do it again. In case you’re new to the series, we’ll do a roster preview as we count down the days until the Chicago Bears September 7th season opener against the Buffalo Bills.
One. More. Week.
George “Papa Bear” Halas was also known as “Mr. Everything”. This was an extremely fitting nickname, because he didn’t only own the Bears; he also played for them, coached them, and handled their business. He also had a brief stint with the New York Yankees. He did a lot of things, but obviously his greatest achievements came with the beloved Bears. Without Halas, there is no way the NFL is as great as it is today. Basically, all successful NFL teams, players, coaches and owners owe Halas and his Bears a thank you for making the league what it is. If it wasn’t for the Bears, there would be no NFL.
Halas founded the Decatur Staleys in 1920 and used the colors of his alma mater, navy blue and orange, as their team colors. They moved to Chicago in 1921 and became the Chicago Staleys before becoming the Chicago Bears in 1922.
Papa Bear had a lot of success with his team, winning eight championships (two as an owner, eight as a coach). He holds the Bears records for most wins, with 324. The NFC Championship Trophy is named after him and his number 7 jersey is retired.
Jan 19, 2014; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson hoists the George Halas Trophy, named after the Chicago Bears legend, after the 2013 NFC Championship football game against the San Francisco 49ers at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports
Bob Avellini is another notable number 7, but his accomplishments were not as remarkable as Halas’. Wow, that was an understatement. The Bears 9-year quarterback threw 33 touchdown passes to 69 career interceptions. Not much to say about him except that he was pretty good at giving the ball to Walter Payton.