Was 2020 offseason final nail in GM Ryan Pace coffin

Chicago Bears - Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports
Chicago Bears - Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports /

Ryan Pace spent 2020 fixing past mistakes. That led to more mistakes

Six months ago, after the majority of the offseason, I wrote “If there was a theme of the Chicago Bears 2020 NFL offseason, it was redemption.” Ryan Pace was given a chance to redeem himself for past mistakes that he made.

That is fair, and everyone deserves a second chance. Ryan Pace missed when trading up for Mitch Trubisky, and Leonard Floyd. Beyond that, he invested heavily in tight end with Adam Shaheen and Trey Burton and had nothing to show for it.

With those misses, the young GM was able to point to other hits, his inexperience, and a new head coach in order to buy new time and a second chance at fixing those issues.

You can blame Matt Nagy for Nick Foles, but the reality is that Nagy was not picking from an entire pool for quarterbacks. He likely preferred Foles over Jameis Winston, Cam Newton, and Andy Dalton due to familiarity.

However, Pace spent draft assets and more money on Foles than any of the other three combined. Handling the draft assets and money was not the job of Nagy. It was a desperate move from a GM who knew he screwed up with Trubisky. The fans’ cries for Trubisky to return to the lineup after the addition of Foles is all you need to know about his redemption signing to date.

Robert Quinn was given a lucrative 5-year deal, although it is mainly funny money after 2021. Still, after missing on Leonard Floyd, Pace once again went a bit overboard to ensure that he fixed his mistake. Floyd, who is younger and playing for a contract is having a better season than Quinn, who just saw guaranteed money.

The issue with Quinn signing is that they knew that he was a liability against the run and in coverage when they signed him. At least they should have because we knew it. If he was going to produce sacks, it would not be an issue. However, now he is just a guy who barely plays, and once again has fans calling for the past starter.

Jimmy Graham was targeted 60 times in Green Bay and had 38 catches for 447 yards and three touchdowns. This year he has 57 targets for 35 catches, 302 yards, and five touchdowns. The only thing he has done better than his woeful performance in Green Bay is get targeted more often. I guess one good thing is that Trey Burton has not come back to hurt them yet.

Adam Shaheen has outproduced Cole Kmet, but we knew Kmet was not going to produce early into his career. However, his very low snap counts were a bit disappointing early into the season.

The Kmet pick was curious as the rest of the offseason was win-now. It also made the selections of Trevis Gipson and Kindle Vildor even more questionable.

Anyone with eyes could see that the offensive line let the Chicago Bears down in 2019. They did not have any depth at all, and Ryan Pace wrongly extended Bobby Massie, something we questioned at the time.

Signing a former first-round pick in Germain Ifedi is fine, there was a chance he could excel in a new role. For that to be the only serious move is baffling.

The Bears traded up for a depth edge defender in Gipson knowing that they needed to rotate Quinn. However, they did not think for one second that the offensive line could have helped there. Once again, this is something we wrote about extensively.

Ryan Pace got a chance to redeem himself with a quarterback. He went with the predictable choice and saw it fail. He got a chance to redeem himself at pass rusher and overpaid for what he knew was a rotational player. Ryan Pace had a chance to get tight end right and held steady at best. All of this while failing to put anything into the offensive line.

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The combination warrants the discussion of whether or not he should be here beyond January. Getting a second chance is fine. Taking that second chance and setting back the franchise even further shows it is time to pull the plug.