Draft Expands Rift Between Pace, Fox?

Ryan Pace and John Fox are entering their third year together with the Bears, but the duo was not seeing eye to eye before this draft commenced, Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com notes. After this controversial weekend for the franchise, the rift between the GM and coach may well have expanded.

Chicago’s decision to trade multiple draft picks for the right to move up from No. 3 to No. 2 and take Mitch Trubisky has Fox “fuming,” according to an executive of an annual playoff contender, because the veteran head coach might not have been too involved in the decision-making process. After all, this didn’t do much to help the 2017 Bears before a season that could involve Fox coaching for his job.

We don’t know what the hell they were doing,” the anonymous exec told La Canfora. “It’s all anyone is talking about. It’s really bad between Pace and Fox. Fox is fuming about being left in the dark on the trade. I don’t know anyone who likes their draft. From the first pick on, we can’t figure out what they were doing. Go back and look at how many small-school kids they took. People around the league are shocked. It’s really bad between Pace and Fox.”

Beyond Trubisky, the Bears took injury-risk Alabama safety Eddie Jackson and three small-school prospects: Ashland tight end Adam Shaheen, North Carolina A&T running back Tarik Cohen and Kutztown offensive lineman Jordan Morgan. So the odds that this draft class can do a lot to help this particular Bears team may be quite slim. But for the future, Pace believes he’s found his version of Drew Brees, although it’s likely damaged the young relationship between the GM and presumptive 2017 starting quarterback Mike Glennon, Rich Campbell of the Chicago Tribune writes.

Fox has guided the Bears to nine wins in two seasons with the Bears. He led the Broncos to three straight 12-plus-win seasons from 2012-14, although he was gifted Peyton Manning midway through his Denver tenure. Campbell points to Jeff Fisher‘s firing, and Rams GM Les Snead being allowed to pick the next coach, months after the Jared Goff maneuver as an example of how this Trubisky pick could go badly for Fox. Noting that Trubisky will eat into the still-raw Glennon’s practice reps, Campbell argues the Bears won’t be getting the optimal version of the passer for whom they gave an $18.5MM guarantee.

Either the Bears know something no one else in the league knows, or that draft just got a lot of people fired only they don’t know it yet,” another exec told La Canfora.

Should Pace be allowed to shop for a Fox successor as early as 2018, La Canfora expects Saints OC Pete Carmichael, whose Saints tenure overlapped with Pace’s run in their front office for a nine-year period. La Canfora also speculates Northwestern HC Pat Fitzgerald would be a logical candidate, though he’s skeptical if Fitzgerald would leave Northwestern.

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23 comments on “Draft Expands Rift Between Pace, Fox?

  1. luvbeisbol

    Yeah he needs to stay in the job for nine years and make atrocious judgments year after year. Then he’s Millen.

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  2. Tigers2384

    As a Lions fan who lived through the Millen era, I thought I had seen all the stupidity from an incompetent front office disconnected from its coaching staff. This is as bad if not worse. They got ripped off by the 49ers, to move one spot. There was no indication that the 9ers even wanted Trubisky, yet they did it anyway. Then, the draft of the two small school kids who are developmental prospects for a team that needs bodies now is unbelievable.

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    • djtommyaces

      Im sure it wasn’t SF who wanted Trubinsky. I hated the trade but who knows if someone else offered SF a ton for the #2 pick so the Bears felt the need to offer more.

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  3. toby312

    There’s always Cleveland which makes bears second worst:)! Media loves to stir the pot which I understand but I’m old school where coaches coach and gms do drafting and personnel . Now in a perfect world gms

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  4. realfootballfan

    Said it before the draft, anyone who drafted Trubisky high would get everyone fired. That pick isn’t going to save Pace. It just sealed his fate too. It’s probably the end of the road for Fox too, even though he he does have experience turning 2 programs around. Pace is just the latest in a long line of guys who got promoted above their ability. This guy should probably be an area scout at best. That Kevin White pick was a disaster and now this. I haven’t seen anyone draft as bad as he has since Gene Smith in Jacksonville and Billy Devaney in St. Louis.

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  5. Z-A

    To be fair the bears would have taken sub-par talent with those picks anyway. The niners did them a favor.

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  6. BAINES03

    La Canfora has been shown to have completely fabricated sources in the past under the label of “anonymous execs”. It’s ridiculous that CBS still employs him and a shame that PFR links to his tabloid garbage.

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  7. SD Speak For Myself

    Where did this jackass GM come from? And how does the owner let the GM pull a surprise attack on a veteran coach? I will make a lot of scratch on these morons this year…lay the points!

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  8. T206

    I’ve seen Shaheen play, he’s legit and he’s going to be one of the best TE’s in the league very very soon! More teams should of had him on their radar! Good job Bears on that pick!

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    • djtommyaces

      He not the sharpest knife in the drawer. I hope they dummy down the playbook for him

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