Bears Chairman Has Telling ‘Uncomfortable’ Moment With Ex-Coach Matt Nagy

Matt Nagy

Getty Bears chairman George McCaskey had a telling comment about a conversation he had with Matt Nagy.

George McCaskey went viral for all the wrong reasons at his year end press conference. Again.

The chairman of the Chicago Bears generally speaks once annually, which is a good thing considering the response he has gotten in recent years when he speaks about his team with the media.

This year, McCaskey was blasted for an “embarrassing” press conference in which he discussed the firings of head coach Matt Nagy and general manager Ryan Pace, the state of the franchise and his qualifications when it comes to choosing the next coach and GM. In the hour he spoke to the media, he gave multiple questionable responses and statements, with a few highlighting a concerning lack of football acumen.

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McCaskey Had Multiple Head-Scratching Moments

There was a report that circulated last November courtesy of Shaw Media’s Hub Arkush suggesting McCaskey spoke to Nagy and told the ex-coach he wanted rookie quarterback Justin Fields to start over veteran Andy Dalton. Nagy denied the report, and when he was asked about it at the presser, McCaskey gave a baffling response.

“Matt and I talked about it,” McCaskey said about Fields on January 10. “At one point he asked me what I thought and I said, ‘I’m uncomfortable that you’re even asking me the question.’”

It was an odd response to say the least, and it sent a confusing message. Why would the team chairman be uncomfortable discussing who his starting quarterback should be? He will, after all, be choosing the next coach and GM.

When asked who holds him accountable, McCaskey cited a board of directors that includes multiple family members, including his mother, team owner Virginia Halas McCaskey.

“My performance is reviewed by ownership and the board of directors, and ownership has informed me it wishes me to continue in this role,” he said.

Another questionable comment? When asked his thoughts on Fields, he said this:

“I’m just a fan. I’m not a football evaluator.”

“Right now, the Bears don’t need a fan running the show,” Bears insider Adam Hoge of NBC Sports wrote about McCaskey on January 11. “They need an owner. Unfortunately, McCaskey said very little Monday to suggest he can be that guy.”

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McCaskey Will Ultimately Choose Next HC & GM

The team chairman since 2011, McCaskey has assembled a five-person committee tasked with selecting the Bears’ next coach and GM.

“I expect that we will reach a consensus on both positions,” McCaskey said about the search. “Ultimately, though, the decision on the next general manager and head coach will be mine.”

The committee consists of McCaskey, Hall of Fame executive Bill Polian, Bears President Ted Phillips, Bears vice president of player engagement LaMar “Soup” Campbell and Bears senior vice president of diversity, equity and inclusion Tanesha Wade.

“We get that a lot of Bears fans are unhappy, and we’re unhappy, too, and we’re frustrated,” McCaskey added.

“We understand that there’s not really a whole lot that can be said today that’s going to make people feel better about the situation. It may even be that once the candidates are introduced, people will say, ‘Oh, you picked the wrong guy,’ or ‘you didn’t get it right’ or whatever. The only opportunity to produce results is on the field, and that won’t be for some time to come. We think in time it will be shown that we have chosen the right people to lead the Bears.”

The Bears last won a playoff game in January 2011, and they have had three winning seasons since 2010, so fans are hoping he gets it right this time around.

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