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Botched Firing by Producers of Botched Hiring

Analysis: The Bears appear poised to give Matt Nagy his walking papers in a manner reminiscent of the way they hired a coach more than two decades ago.

A little over 22 years ago Michael McCaskey hired Dave McGinnis to coach the Chicago Bears, announced it to all but didn't finalize the pay or paperwork.

Silly little oversight that.

A while later he had to send Ted Phillips down to talk to us media types in the Halas Hall auditorium. Perspiration dripping profusely from his forehead under the TV spotlight, a gaunt-looking Teddy explained McGinnis actually would not be coach. Then the Bears went down their checklist later to hire Dick Jauron and Michael got kicked upstairs by his mother, matriarch Virginia McCaskey.

Michael McCaskey is no longer with us, but it appears the McCaskey family knows about as much about firing a coach as it does about how to hire one.

All indications are they could launch Nagy after he coaches one more game. They apparently hadn't told him this, but the word got out in the form of an internet report saying he knew he was coaching his last game. Then Tuesday evening Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune reported Nagy met with ownership before the second walk-through practice of the day, and then with players, prior to canceling meetings scheduled for later.

No one from management or ownership bothered to come down to the media room or at least issue a release offering words of support, an explanation or even denial. They let Nagy and his coaches and players answer questions all day about some leaked report that sounds like at least the bulk of which could be true.

Why Nagy would put up with this charade without telling them where and how far to shove their one solitary Lombardi Trophy is beyond anyone's comprehension. 

It's probably because Nagy is a good guy and handles things the proper way. So he's not trashing anyone and is going along with it all.

Nothing official has been announced yet, but just wait for the next leak. If you want to know anything about what happens at Halas Hall, just wait for a leak. Bears ownership and management is loaded with leakers. 

They don't like just telling people something up front, announcing it properly to the world, much like they don't know how to fire a coach at the proper time and in a proper way. They usually just give news to their league mouthpiece, NFL Network. So check there for your first official word of the firing.

Nagy deserves firing, not embarrassment

Nagy hasn't done a good job. It's obvious.

He deserves to be fired just like any other NFL coach who in four years has failed to elevate the team's offense, after being hailed as the next Wunderkind of offensive football.

Sure, he won a division title. Actually, Vic Fangio and a spectacular defense won the division and the offense went along for the ride.

After about the midpoint of 2018, the Bears offense began a gradual descent from mediocrity into darkness. This all falls on Nagy.

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Mitchell Trubisky didn't turn out to be the best quarterback and that goes back on GM Ryan Pace for trading away draft picks foolishly to move up and select him. Whether Pace gets what's coming to him is yet to be determined.

But there is a way to fire a coach, to fire anyone for that matter. Dignity and respect are keywords here, and no doubt the Bears will use those words later about Nagy after firing him, but they will ring hollow because there has been no real respect shown to him from the way this has all come down the pike.

Someone who has put in as much time and fought the NFL wars over the last four years the way Nagy has on behalf of a bunch of rich people living off their grandfather's name deserves a proper firing.

John Fox was decaying before our very eyes at Halas Hall and they gave him the decency of waiting until the season ended, then announced it the way they always have. Coach Marc Trestman and GM Phil Emery both got respect, even if they didn't deserve it. They even had Emery come in and give a talk at an exit press conference, which ended rather uncomfortably for all as he proclaimed "Go Bears."

They did this type of thing when they fired Jauron, as well, but he finished his exit press conference by telling the media he was glad he didn't have to talk to them anymore.

This One Is Different

They've never fired a coach at midseason until now, and it shows. They apparently need the practice.

Ownership must have decided they didn't want to wait and it's easy to understand why they wouldn't want Nagy exerting further influence over a quarterback with the kind of natural talent Justin Fields has. 

Why let him ruin this kid's talent?

Can you ever remember seeing a Bears quarterback who could make throws like those two in Pittsburgh to Jimmy Graham and Darnell Mooney, and the one he made on the run right Sunday to Mooney downfield before he suffered his injured ribs?

You can't, because it's never happened.

So they need different quarterback trainers and coaching to make sure this one doesn't get botched.

What they didn't need to do was tie Nagy to the back of a car and drive off 90 mph down a gravel road the way they essentially have done.

It's more embarrassing even than 3 1/2 years worth of mediocre offense, more embarrassing than leaving a stadium they just fought to build only 18 years ago, more embarrassing than being owned by a guy in Green Bay who lies about his medical history and endangers others.

It's exactly as embarrassing as hiring a coach 22 years ago and then turning around and telling everyone, "whoops, our bad."

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