Citing sources, the Tribune reported that Kromer became emotional and tearful during his apology and said he shouldn't have made critical comments about quarterback Jay Cutler to NFL Network reporter Ian Rapoport, though he did admit being frustrated by Cutler's play.
Kromer told the Tribune just that he "said what I had to say" to the offense.
Kromer told the players he should not have spoken outside the family circle and did so in the heat of emotion and apologized hoping they all could use it as a learning experience, he told the Tribune.
"I'm still kind of trying to sort my way through this to be honest," one player said. "It's one of the most [messed] up things I have ever seen."
"It's a [messed] up situation," another player said.
Rapoport reported last week that the Bears had a "serious case of buyer's remorse" over the seven-year, $126.7 million contract given to Cutler after last season and that there is a "frustration" with Cutler's play this season.
Kromer reportedly denied in Monday's meeting that he was responsible for the "buyer's remorse" comments. According to the Tribune, Cutler shook his head while Kromer spoke in the meeting.
Cutler, 31, has thrown for 3,446 yards and 26 touchdowns this season but also leads the NFL in turnovers with 21. The Bears are just 18th in the league in total offense.
The latest Cutler controversy adds to what has been a dysfunctional season for the Bears, who sit in last place in the NFC North at 5-8.
In addition to the criticism of Cutler, there have been reports of a rift between Cutler and No. 1 receiver Brandon Marshall, and head coach Marc Trestman has been criticized for his handling of the team. With the Bears tied for 28th in the NFL in total defense, it's also been reported that defensive coordinator Mel Tucker will likely be fired at the end of the season.
The Bears next host the New Orleans Saints on Monday night.
- Ben Estes