As the action in the John Fox wooing moved from Lake Forest to Denver, Chicago Bears fans were left to continue to refresh their Twitter timelines and watch for the puffs of white smoke to become visible from the head coaching conclave ongoing at Halas Hall. The action has dragged for what seems like longer than the Marc Trestman era, but if you’re to believe the latest reports, a deal is imminent.
Lending even more weight was a tweet from Jay Glazer, a known Fox insider:
The Bleacher Report’s Jason Cole stood alone on Thursday reporting that the deal would be done, but there were no other substantiated reports. When you get confirmations from Glazer and Rapoport, it certainly makes it seem like it’s a question of when and not if Fox becomes the next Chicago Bears head coach.
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As Fox returned back to Denver, that seemed a little less likely, but fear not Bears fans, Ryan Pace was quick to jump on a plane and head to Colorado to meet with Fox directly.
So what’s been the holdup? It seems like one likely obstacle might have been the actual review of the contract. Fox shares an agent with his former defensive coordinator Jack del Rio, who just inked a deal to become the Raiders next victim, er, head coach. So it could be that their agent was tied up on the del Rio deal and only now has time to dot the i’s and cross the t’s on Fox’s deal.
Another reason is that Pace is not about to rush this, the most important move he’s going to make as a rookie GM.
"“My experience in New Orleans — the relationship between the head coach and general manager, that’s critical,” Pace said at his introductory news conference on Jan. 9. “So is the head coach and the quarterback. Those are the two most important relationships in the building.”"
That brings us to the question of the relationship between Fox and Jay Cutler. The next big decision that Pace and Fox will face is a decision on their quarterback of the near future if not the future. A bonus in Cutler’s contract comes due if he’s on the roster on March 10th, so they have a little over a month to figure out what to do with Jay.
If they’re looking for my two cents, they might as well stick with Cutler this season if for no other reason than they have no better alternative. Would they go to battle with Jimmy Clausen or David Fales? The top names in free agency are Mark Sanchez, Brian Hoyer and Michael Vick. Do any of those guys do anything for you? The Cutler money has already been spent. You might as well just grin and bear it for another season until you figure out what you’re doing at the position.
You would think that Fox puts an emphasis on the running game and makes the Bears offensive success less about Jay Cutler and more about the other 10 guys in the huddle.
Stay tuned as we expect the white smoke to come out of Halas Hall any minute, with a press conference introducing John Fox for early next week.