David Montgomery sticks it to the Chicago Bears and Ryan Poles
A few days ago, David Montgomery wiped his Instagram nearly clean outside of a few photos that had nothing to do with the Chicago Bears. Rumors were floating around that Ryan Poles did not want to pay Montgomery more than $5 million per year. Is this becoming a habit of Poles? He did something similar with Roquan Smith and things turned sour before Poles sent Smith packing. It was the right decision but I'm not so sure that's the case with the David Montgomery situation. It was recently reported that David Montgomery is headed north to the Detroit Lions.
David Montgomery has become one of the main leaders in the locker room. Seeing him go is going to be difficult for players and fans alike. Jaquan Brisker and Khari Blasingame made it known they were not thrilled by going to Twitter. I'm sure they both understand this is a business, especially Basingame who started his career in Tennessee. That does not make it any less difficult to see a friend, teammate and leader not brought back. It has to feel even worse knowing he went to a divisional rival.
Now, that last part might be more specific for the fans. I know I am not going to enjoy watching Montgomery play against the Chicago Bears two times each year wearing a Lions uniform. My initial reaction was that I don't care that much about Montgomery not being brought back, but I was not happy to see him go to the Lions. My secondary response was well, at least it was not the Packers.
Was this a way for David Montgomery to stick it to the Chicago Bears?
Ryan Poles has spoken very highly of David Montgomery when asked questions about the now-former Bears running back. He spoke about his leadership and the work ethic that Montgomery brings to the table. It sounded to me as though Poles wanted Montgomery to stick around, however, actions always speak louder than words. Does Poles not value the running back position? Most teams and general managers view the position as replaceable, but that's not always the case.
There are plenty of other options for Poles and the Chicago Bears. They already signed running back Travis Homer on a very cheap deal. Montgomery agreed to a three-year deal worth $21 million. That's only a million per year more than the rumored amount Poles wanted to pay him. Well, Homer's deal is only a two-year deal worth a maximum of $4.5 million. Homes is mostly a special teams player who has only amassed an average of just north of 100 yards rushing and receiving per year for the last four years in Seattle. He is primarily a third-down back.
It looks as though the Chicago Bears are turning things over to Khalil Herbert. Herbert struggles to block on third down and it could be more of a running back by committee approach in 2023 with Herbert and Homer. Not seeing Montgomery in a Bears uniform will be difficult. You just have to wonder if the decision to go to Detroit for a not-very-large contract was Montgomery's way to throw shade at Poles and the Bears organization. I bet he will quickly circle the dates the Lions face the Bears each time over the next three years.
Poles was right though, running backs are replaceable. Now, the question will be, is there any disdain toward the front office seeing a leader like Montgomery not brought back? Will this have any effect on future free agents or retaining other players inside the locker room? Only time will tell. At this point, Poles has done an admirable job. However, this team needs more free-agent help.