Learning from the School of Hard Knocks

Analysis: Ryan Pace has been beaten up over the Mitchell Trubisky trade, as well as other moves, so when he had the chance to throw away draft picks and chase a player with question marks his experiences provided a guideline.
Publish date:

Knowledge can be derived from experience.

Apparently Bears GM Ryan Pace has learned plenty since 2017, when he jumped at the opportunity to bid against himself for Mitchell Trubisky.

Reports by Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer and also Fox's Jay Glazer said Pace never made an offer on new Colts quarterback Carson Wentz. 

So, virtually all the reports citing unnamed sources saying the Bears offered more than the Colts for Wentz were either people reading too much into poor information or making up things.

The more significant aspect of all this is what it says about Pace and the Halas Hall operation.

The Bears were content apparently to monitor the situation but not bite on Howie Roseman's attempt to start a bidding war. The Colts refused to budge on the Eagles GM's demands and they didn't have to, because the Bears never entered into it.

The one looking stupid now is Roseman, but not necessarily because he traded Wentz or because Wentz failed to become the player they thought he was when drafted. Rather, they ate roughly $34 million in cap space in a year when the cap minimum has been announced at a low $180 million, well below what it was last year.

They did it, and didn't get a first-round draft pick or a starting quarterback in return. That's stupid. That's country stupid.

As for Pace, after the season ended Bears board chairman George McCaskey and CEO Ted Phillips made it a point to emphasize the collaboration between their GM and coach Matt Nagy. 

The Bears seem to have collaborated. They had inside information on Wentz courtesy of quarterbacks coach John DeFilippo, and probably even Nick Foles.

Then Pace made a determination of Wentz's value, heard what Roseman wanted, weighed the impact on their own salary cap of bringing Wentz' s huge contract aboard, and never made an offer.

Roseman baited the Bears and the Colts both by floating false reports about the picks they'd been offered. What about that offer of two seconds and a third now, Ron Jaworski? Pace never took the bait. Actually, neither did the Colts' Chris Ballard, who made his offer and lived with it.

It points to how Pace has become more calculating, places more value on the opinions of others with knowledge within the organization and realizes far better now what would work for the Bears in their offensive system and also financially.

In 2017 Pace gave up a third and two fourths to select Trubisky when he didn't even need to do it.

On Thursday, we found Pace wouldn't give up more than a second and a third to take Wentz.

This might say a lot about Wentz.

It does say even more about Pace and what he's learned as a GM about the value of draft picks.

Twitter: BearDigest@BearsOnMaven