The Bears’ Disastrous Choices Laid the Groundwork for the Buccaneers and Chiefs to Reach Super Bowl 55

The Kansas City Chiefs and Tampa Bay Buccaneers will square off in Super Bowl 55 down in Tampa, Florida at Raymond James Stadium. The game will be must-see TV since it will feature Patrick Mahomes going up against Tom Brady.

Chicago Bears fans, though, are going to have a hard time watching Super Bowl 55 since the team’s disastrous choices laid the groundwork for the Buccaneers and Chiefs to reach the Championship Game this season.

The Bears hired Phil Emery over Jason Licht, Tampa Bay’s current GM, in 2012

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In 2012, the Bears hired Phil Emery as their general manager instead of Jason Licht, who built the 2020 Buccaneers roster. Chicago went 23-25 while Emery was the general manager and failed to reach the playoffs.

Emery was fired after the 2014 season. He hasn’t landed another job in the NFL since being let go by Chicago. Meanwhile, Licht was able to build a Super Bowl roster in his seventh season with the Buccaneers. He drafted Mike Evans in 2014, Chris Godwin in 2017, and signed Tom Brady, Antonio Brown, Rob Gronkowski, Leonard Fournette, Ndamukong Suh, and Jason Pierre-Paul in free agency.

The Bears have been a walking disaster since winning Super Bowl 20 over the New England Patriots. The franchise has only won six playoff games since Mike Ditka’s group became the best team in the NFL.

Chicago’s last postseason win came on Jan. 16, 2011. Had the team replaced Lovie Smith with a competent coach instead of Marc Trestman–say someone like Bruce Arians–the Bears could be sitting in a different position.

The Bears hired Marc Trestman over Bruce Arians, the Buccaneers’ current HC, in 2013

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After firing Lovie Smith, the Bears made the foolish decision of hiring Marc Trestman over Bruce Arians in 2013. The Arizona Cardinals pounced on Chicago’s mistake and hired Arians, who went 49-30 with the franchise and made the playoffs two times. The 68-year-old then joined the Buccaneers in 2019 and is now in the Super Bowl in just his second season in Tampa Bay.

Trestman was a disaster for the Bears. He compiled a record of 13-19 in his two years in Chicago and was fired after the 2014 season. Like Phil Emery, Trestman hasn’t found a job in the NFL since his Bears days ended.

John Fox coached the Bears for three seasons after the Trestman era ended. He was replaced by Matt Nagy in 2019, who won the Coach of the Year Award in his first campaign in Chicago. However, the Bears have regressed under Nagy in the last two years.

Chicago clearly made a mistake by passing on Jason Licht and Bruce Arians. However, their biggest blunder came in the 2017 draft.

Patrick Mahomes landed with the Chiefs after Chicago drafted Mitchell Trubisky

The Bears had the second overall pick in the 2017 draft. Chicago GM Ryan Pace traded up to select Mitchell Trubisky out of UNC. Deshaun Watson landed with the Houston Texans, while Patrick Mahomes went to the Chiefs.

Trubisky has turned into a bust for the Bears. Meanwhile, Watson is a star in Houston and Mahomes is an MVP and the best quarterback in the NFL for the Chiefs. Chicago may never recover from passing on Watson and Mahomes for Trubisky.

The Chiefs and Buccaneers should send the Bears a thank you card for all of their mistakes.