A change of Pace

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Bears offseason
Aug 27, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bears general manager Ryan Pace looks on from the sidelines before the preseason game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

In listening to Chicago Bears general manager Ryan Pace after his draft I was struck by two things: he’s not drafting to hold on to his job and he is entrenched in his best player available (BPA) strategy.

I’m not insinuating that he’s gone rogue or trying to show he’s smarter than everyone else. Many general managers would have played it safe. They would have stayed at three and been satisfied with selecting a defensive player at three. Some say drafting Trubisky at two was an act of desperation. I have to assume Pace was getting calls for number three, even if it was only from the Cleveland Browns.


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Going up to get him wasn’t the act of a quarterback-crazed general manager, but a measured one. The remaining picks of the draft tend to prove it. Let’s revisit it because you probably haven’t stewed over it enough as of yet.

  • Pace traded down instead of grabbing someone for the secondary and selected Adam Sheheen.
  • In the fourth round, he picked Eddie Jackson and Tarik Cohen.
  • And finally, he selected Jordan Morgan in the fifth round.

An injured safety, two Division II players, and an undersized RB: not the draft of a desperate general managers, but one who seems to vehemently trust his draft board. You can’t tell me other general managers wouldn’t have drafted a player at a big-time program in the fifth round or grabbed that defensive back in the second instead of trading back. To me, that’s desperation.

In every interview I have watched on Pace, he’s always struck me as intelligent and measured. Pace was quoted after the Trubisky pick,

“If we want to be great you can’t sit on your hands. I don’t want to be average around here, and these are the moves you have to make.”

I applaud Ryan Pace on his quest to build a great team, for not resting on his laurels, and the guts to stick to his board.

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