The shake-up in Chicago continues. On the same day that long-time general manager Jerry Angelo was fired, offensive coordinator Mike Martz has resigned. With quarterbacks coach Shane Day also reportedly on the way out, the Bears will be left in an awkward situation with voids in the front office and the coaching staff but the head coach still in place.
It’s not apparent at this point if Martz was gently forced out the door, but the development is a little bit odd. If you’re going to clean house, clean the whole freakin’ house. Why is it that Lovie Smith continues to survive while everyone surrounding him takes bullets?
It’s not clear what Smith has on the McCaskey family and/or team president Ted Phillips, but he’s staying on despite the fact he’s made the playoffs just once in five years with a more-than-capable roster.
The way I see it, only under extremely rare circumstances should a general manager be fired and a head coach kept in place. Now you can expect Smith will want to have a say in who gets hired to essentially be his boss while also having to find a new offensive coordinator and new quarterbacks coach. In addition to that being quite a lot on one man’s plate when he’s trying to prepare for the draft and free agency, that also jeopardizes the health of the hierarchy in Chicago.
If Martz did indeed make his own decision to escape, it’s a bold one. With Jay Cutler and Matt Forte healthy again in 2012, the Bears could do some serious damage on offense. He may be thinking about potential openings in Cincinnati, Green Bay, Atlanta, Carolina and Denver, but his style and approach doesn’t suit everyone.
With so many tasks at hand, look for the Bears to take the cheap and easy route by sliding offensive line coach Mike Tice into the offensive coordinator role. And with his big name and reputation, look for Martz to find work elsewhere, either at the pro or college level. He has a superb offensive mind, and could be quite beneficial in the right place.