In our 2017 NFL mock draft, we based the order on the actual current order at the regular season. We sorted the playoff teams based on how we’re predicting the NFL playoffs will shape out. The NFL breaks ties in draft order by reverse order of strength of schedule. Thus we don’t know for sure who will be picking #14 and #15 between Indianapolis and Minnesota’s pick (which is owned by Philadelphia), as the NFL has not confirmed the order officially.Follow paulmbanks
With the idea of bringing a college football bowl game to Chicago gathering steam, we penned an op-ed on this idea for the Chicago Tribune RedEye edition. You can read it in full over at this link, and we excerpted part of the introduction below:Follow paulmbanks
In our 2017 NFL mock draft, we based the order on the actual current order as of December 21st, with some good help from our friends at NFL Trade Rumors.
Team needs were sometimes, but not always taken into account, as team needs are a very fluid situation. Merry Christmas! Happy Holidays! Season’s Greetings, Happy Kwanza, Joyous Hannukah, Joy Noel, Make the Yuletide gay and a warm festivus for the rest of us.Follow paulmbanks
As the last days of 2013 winded down the future of Jay Cutler was in limbo. When his Chicago Bears blew a regular season finale that functioned as a playoffs play-in game versus the Green Bay Packers, his season was over and his contract was up. Then came reports he might not be staying, followed by Cutler himself talking that potential talk in press opportunities.
Perhaps it was just agent-driven posturing, maybe it was legitimate, maybe it was a little of both, but it certainly worked as the Chicago Bears realized what they might lose and therefore locked up with a monster contract as they ushered in 2014.Follow paulmbanks
In the words of Tribe Called Quest, “here we go yo, here we go yo, so what so what so what’s the scenario” with the Chicago Bears moving forward?
We’ve heard all about outside consultants coming in to evaluate the organization from top to bottom.
We’ve heard the pressure could be ramping up on both Head Coach John Fox and General Manager Ryan Pace. We’ve heard Jay Cutler could be done for the season, due to a torn labrum in his throwing shoulder, and thus also finished as a Chicago Bear because he’s supposedly out the door once the season is over.Follow paulmbanks
Today was more than just one of those @EmptySeatPics kind of days at Soldier Field. It was a people will break into your house in order to leave you Chicago Bears tickets kind of days. The lakefront stadium had a “oh, what time is the game?”
“Well, what time can you get here” kind of Sundays. I guess people in Chicago were still focused on Black Friday sales. Here take a look:Follow paulmbanks
Remember when Drew Bledsoe got “Bledsoed” by Tom Brady back in 2001? Then he got Bledsoed again several years later by Tony Romo? You might remember when Romo himself then got Bledsoed, or now we can say Romoed; because it just happened.
While injured, Romo lost his starting gig to Dak Prescott, who’s an early front-runner for the NFL MVP award. Prescott has led the Dallas Cowboys to a 9-1 record, placing them a peg or two above a National Football League that is mostly overflowing with mediocrity.
It’s Prescott’s team now, which means Romo needs to move on in 2017.Follow paulmbanks
Perhaps now the NFL has become an Icarus; it’s flown too close to the sun. The National Football League has been top dog in America by such a wide margin for so long that league hubris has become unbearable. They just went too far: with both the over-expanding and the unapologetic attitude persistently conveyed.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has been vociferously booed every single time he graces the stage at the NFL Draft for years, and it is one million percent deserved.Follow paulmbanks
All bets are off with Lovie Smith and the Illini football program; both literally and figuratively. The line for Michigan State at Illinois on November 5th opened briefly with the Spartans as 9 1/2 point favorites, but then quickly went off the boards. There is no spread, at all, on the game at any major leading sport book right now.
Vegas simply does not mess around. They are all business so when instances like this occur, something is definitely up.
That something might be Smith being “miserable” in Champaign according to ESPN’s Adam Rittenberg.Follow paulmbanks
So this is why Chicago Bears Head Coach John Fox has been more condescending and ornery than usual to the media this season.
He’s worried about his job. Fox, even been his standards and those of the Bears organization, has acted more defensive and stand-offish towards the press in 2016 and you can bet the warming temperature of his seat has a lot to do with that.
It’s reportedly not just John Fox, but also General Manager Ryan Pace and the Bears front office who are being intensely re-evaluated at this point. If they don’t impress the outside consultant evaluator, a pink slip could be coming in the near future.Follow paulmbanks
There’s a saying in the National Football League- “new regimes mean new quarterbacks.” The phrase applies to new head coaches or new general managers; and sometimes when you get a combo platter at those positions. We’re in year two of the General Manager Ryan Pace/Head Coach John Fox era for the Chicago Bears.
Pace/Fox didn’t get to bring in their own signal caller when they took over because there was still a ton of money owed to Jay Cutler at the time.Follow paulmbanks