The Chicago Bears dropped another game to the Green Bay Packers, losing 35-16 at Soldier Field in Week 17 but were able to back into the NFC Playoffs with the Los Angeles Rams win over the Arizona Cardinals. With the expanded playoff format, the Bears nabbed the seventh seed and will now take on New Orleans on Sunday afternoon. But while it appears Matt Nagy is safe to return for another season in Chicago, it’s general manager Ryan Pace whose seat just might be the hottest right now.
Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune wrote about general manager Ryan pace in his 10 Bears things from Sunday’s game article, hinting that if the Bears do make a change they are going to be a week behind due to making the playoffs. Biggs dropped a note in there that the franchise could target Kansas City Chiefs director of football operations Mike Borgonzi as a replacement:
Rumors have circulated in the last week that the Bears could target Kansas City Chiefs director of football operations Mike Borgonzi. This is speculation, but I heard this from two unrelated sources in the last few days, and with the Chiefs earning the No. 1 seed in the AFC playoffs, Borgonzi wouldn’t be available to be hired away until the season is complete for the defending Super Bowl champions.
Does that mean it’s Borgonzi or no one else? Absolutely not. But that’s a name that was churning in the rumor mill the past few days, and a quick hiring cycle this week by teams already looking for new a GM would not remove him from play. Obviously, there are many other people in consideration for GM jobs who are attached to playoff teams, but Borgonzi is the name I heard, and if the Bears would consider hiring a new GM to work with their current coach, he’s someone who could come in and have a preestablished relationship with Nagy.
Now that doesn’t mean Pace is fired with a loss to New Orleans, but I believe he would have to beat the Saints to even feel somewhat safe about his job status.
The other thing to note is that we still do not know what Pace’s contract is. It could be up after next season or the Bears could have extended him quietly on a one-year deal to match him up with Nagy. That’s another factor in this.
Even with the playoff appearance, it doesn’t sound like the Bears front office feels good about what is going on.