Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Two Risks That The Bears Should Be Willing To Take
Okay, okay, maybe the recent risk that the Cubs took on the North Side hasn't worked out so far. If I must spell it out for you, then I will: M-I-L-T-O-N. Of course, he still has awhile to turn things around and save Jim Hendry from looking like a complete moron. But the fact is, Bradley's explosive temper and high injury concerns flashed as bright as the Las Vegas strip when he was on the market, but the Cubs still opted for him.
Sometimes in sports, there are risks that you have to take. And they wouldn't be labeled as such if there wasn't a chance that they might not work out. Unfortunately, Bradley is on the negative side thus far. Now, I've got another risk that a different Chicago team should highly consider taking. The Bears should make a trade for Brandon Marshall or sign Plaxico Burress. I understand that you might be laughing because of the idiocy these two men have portrayed in recent months. But I figure, why not? Live a little. I mean, the Bears have historically been a team with extremely small cojones when it comes to pulling off bigtime transactions. However, if the Jay Cutler move is any indication of a change, then the Bears might as well keep the train rolling and pursue a playmaker for him to throw the ball to.
I realize that in a blog earlier in the summer, I wrote that the Bears current receiving core is serviceable. I still wholeheartedly believe that. But take the recent developments involving Marshall and Burress and mix them with what I heard on the radio today about what the Bears would have to give up in a trade, I'm feeling good about this risk. Today, I was listening to ESPN Radio 1000 in Chicago and they were talking about trading for Marshall. The guys were saying that everybody they've talked to have said that the Bears would probably only have to give up Devin Hester and a 4th round draft pick. I nearly drove off the road! It could be early speculation, and I think that would be a little unrealistic. But let's just say Denver loved Hester that much for the sake of argument. It would be a no-brainer for the Bears.
Sure, Devin Hester has explosive talent, but ever since he started to focus on getting better as a receiver, his kick return skills didn't just diminish, they vanished completely! If the Bears wanted to wait around for awhile, I'm sure he could become an above average wideout, but when a guy like Brandon Marshall comes around, you've got to look long and hard at the situation. As good as Hester may get, he still has below average size and lacks versatility in route-running. Marshall has the prototypical NFL receiver mold and has a special connection on the field with newly-acquired Jay Cutler. Regarding Marshall's off-the-field incidents, he said that he was a changed man and wouldn't make any more mistakes (That is up to him of course, who knows if he actually means it). There is no doubt that he'd be a risk because from all accounts the guy is a complete nut-job. But the connection with Cutler and the meager assets the Bears would have to give up, I'd say that this risk is worth a very aggressive try.
The other possibility is of course Plaxico Burress. I could go on and on about how big of an idiot he is for shooting himself and then trying to cover it up by saying his name was "Harris Smith" at the hospital...but I'll leave it at that and move on. Besides that incident, Burress has for the most part been nothing more than a great receiver and a pretty loyal teammate. He hasn't continuously pulled a "TO" and left teams after a few years when he wanted a change, he was loyal to the Steelers and stuck with the Giants until...well you know.
While the Bears aren't swimming in money right now, they do have the funds to sign "Plax" to a deal if they wanted him bad enough. Both options (Burress and Marshall) are fairly viable and either player would make more of an impact on the Bears than they would on any other team in the league...hands down. Chicago had settled for a mediocre quarterback for a few decades until the Cutler acquisition. So all I'm saying, risk or not, why not end the period of settling for mediocre receivers too? It makes sense and the fact that Marshall already has a good relationship with Cutler is the icing on the cake.
Again, sometimes in sports you have to take risks. They might work, they might not, but the Bears could have never dreamed that Plaxico Burress would shoot himself and get released by the Giants or that Brandon Marshall would demand a trade this late in the game. When situations like these arise, a risk is the best option sometimes because you never know when it'll come around again. Take this as an example...The Patriots clearly thought Randy Moss was a risk because all they gave up was a 5th round draft choice. How'd that work out? Pretty damn well. So while you may sit there and nitpick by saying Moss is different, he's really not. That risk worked better than New England could have ever imagined, and the Bears could be next in line. But we aren't going to know unless the trigger gets pulled...and not by Plaxico.