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The sad truth for Bears fans about the search for general manager is it only underscores how it was at their expense the McCaskey family accepted mediocrity running their front office.

The current list of candidates is dotted with people so impressive it makes Ryan Pace's retention for so long seem like malfeasance or, at best, laziness on the part of Bears ownership not to replace him.

The latest addition to the GM search is Pittsburgh's Omar Khan, according to a report by Adam Schefter of ESPN. Khan's work as Steelers vice-president of personnel and business administration under GM Kevin Colbert for years has been lauded around the league.

When you add Khan to a list with Rick Smith and Ed Dodds you've got three candidates who have made real differences in forming the success of their franchises.

Khan's abilities differ from many of the others on the list and he really is a self-made executive. It's possible he might be perceived as more of a team president type than a mere general manager. 

Khan's greatest area of expertise has been the salary cap for two decades with the Steelers, who have always been known for their ability to remain competitive despite restraints imposed by the cap.

Hiring Khan as a general manager might require more of a leap of faith in his talent acquisition skills than with some other candidates, especially Smith and Dodds. However, Khan's wide background of duties since coming to the team at a young age included times when he was breaking down film of players. 

The assumption in Pittsburgh was Khan was being groomed to replace Colbert. Mark Madden, a sports talk show host well known in the Pittsburgh area, reported pro scouting coordinator Brandon Hunt is the choice for this rather than Khan and that Khan isn't happy about this.

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Last year Khan appeared to be the favorite for the Houston Texans job but then they hired New England's Nick Caserio.

Khan had interviews with Houston and Carolina last year. Previously he had interviewed with Seattle in 2010, the Rams while still in St. Louis in 2012, the Jets in 2013 and Miami in 2014. 

The Bears could have competition for Khan or any of these other top candidates since the Vikings and Giants are also looking for general managers.

George McCaskey on Monday couldn't discount the five-person hiring committee would sign a GM after the head coach.

"Ideally, the GM would be selected first but if we see a head coach candidate we see a head coach candidate we think is the right one, we’re going to do what it takes to get him in-house," McCaskey said.

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