Bears Market: Three Careers on the Line

Marc TrestmanThe hiring of Marc Trestman is a risky move for first time GM, Phil Emery. It is an outside the box move that will make him look like a genius if it works and a fool if it falls flat.

In 2013, three careers come together with their future all tied together. It’s a crossroads for Emery, Trestman and Jay Cutler.

Emery has made his first big move in firing Lovie Smith and picking a coach from the CFL. Trestman gets to prove a long line of NFL executives wrong for passing on him as a head coach south of the border. Cutler will be entering his 8th season with only two playoff games to show for it.

So far all we know about Emery is that he wins press conferences. That and he also gives the longest intros to said press conferences in the history of professional sports. In his first season, he brought in Brandon Marshall in a deal that only cost the Bears two third round draft picks.

His other moves are still up for debate. Does Shea McClellin have a future as an every down hand on the ground pass rusher? Will Alshon Jeffery develop into the #2 alongside Marshall? Will Brandon Hardin be healthy enough to contribute in the NFL. Those are his first three picks as GM.

Now he has this offseason to fix the offensive line. Two big free agents will be the left tackles, Ryan Clady and Jake Long. Clady leaving Denver would be a pretty big upset, but Long may be on the market. Long is an interesting player. He was an elite left tackle, but has battled injuries the last two seasons. Emery has to decide on Long or going through the draft to patch up the offensive line.

Trestman comes over from the CFL after being looked over for a head coaching gig in the NFL. He took “a leap of faith” as he called it taking a job with Montreal and won two championships while making it to three Grey Cups.

Known as an offensive innovator during his time as an offensive coordinator in the NFL, the pressure is on him to turn around this offensive that had sputtered under Smith. He spoke glowingly about the relationship between quarterback and his coach. It appears as if he is the perfect choice to work with Cutler. He understands the QB position and stated it was the most important position on the field.

Trestman can build a legacy few have built before. If he can add a Super Bowl to his trophy case that already includes two Grey Cups, all of a sudden we are no longer talking about an unknown. We are talking about a guy who will be considered one of the best in the business. On the other hand, if he fizzles out he will probably be done in the NFL and have taken down a GM with him.

Cutler in seven seasons has made an appearance in the playoffs and the Pro Bowl just one time. It was telling when Trestman wouldn’t commit to the term “franchise QB” in his introductory press conference. Cutler has not done enough to earn that tag. In these next two seasons he can erase the previous seven seasons and write new chapters.

There are no more excuses for the Bears quarterback. The Franchise has transitioned from a defensive philosophy to an offensive minded staff with Trestman. He needs to work well with his coach and live up to the hype he had coming over from the Broncos. In the next three years, Cutler will either take his game to another level or he will join a long list of people with all the tools that just don’t put it all together.

He is still in the prime of his career, but this is the chance.

One thing is clear to me. These three men will either enjoy a long career together in Chicago or will all be parting ways at the same time if this move doesn’t pan out.