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posted: 3/22/2013 5:29 AM

Nothing insulting about $2 million for Urlacher

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  • After 13 seasons in Chicago, Brian Urlacher turned down a $2 million offer to play one more season with the Bears.

       After 13 seasons in Chicago, Brian Urlacher turned down a $2 million offer to play one more season with the Bears.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer/2007

 
By Mike North
The Rebel Insider

My father, bless him, had a 1967 Buick Special he bought new. It was his first new car, and for our family it put an end to years of used cars.

Around 1972, the car was starting to wear down a little -- there were some things that had to be fixed, and a little rust was forming above the right rear wheel.

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Well, my dad put it up for sale and got an offer, but he said there was no way he was letting it go for such an insulting price. He chose to hang onto it and 18 months later the car blew its engine.

In my dad's mind, the offer had been inadequate, but looking back it probably was a fair offer.

The Chicago Bears' former All-Pro linebacker, Brian Urlacher, is the '67 Buick. He got an offer of $2 million, but turned it down because he felt it was insulting.

Of course, he feels this way in a league in which Wes Welker, a future Hall of Fame wide receiver with some good years left, just signed a deal for $6 million a year. Ed Reed, a Super Bowl-winning safety, reportedly as of this writing, has been offered $4 million a year, just $2 million more than Urlacher.

Hey Bears fans, would you rather have Ed Reed or Brian Urlacher this season?

Then I hear Mike Ditka on ESPN saying there is no loyalty in the NFL. I think they must have just woke up Ditka because apparently he didn't hear the Bears had made an offer of $2 million.

That's loyalty in my book.

You are past your prime, Brian, but we still want you so here's $2 million!

Urlacher turned it down, but maybe the coach meant Urlacher wasn't being loyal. Ditka also said that Urlacher was a good citizen, and no doubt he was.

But maybe Da Coach forgot Urlacher caused some embarrassment with some issues and headlines putting himself and the team in a bad light.

Most Chicagoans, including myself, wish Urlacher the best, and I will throw him a bone on the way out. I said back in the day I would rather have kicker Sebastian Janikowski than Urlacher.

I still would say, under siege by loyal Bear fans, Janikowski was more valuable than Urlacher because he could kick the ball out of the end zone and score points. Even my friend, Dan McNeil, told me a few months back that Urlacher was a future Hall of Famer, but when I said Janikowski was too, he said, "really?"

Yeah, really! Janikowski scored 118 points last year, and it looks like he could kick for another 10 years. He averaged 7.5 points a game last year.

So, Urlacher fans, I think it's a wash.

Condolences:

My sincere condolences to the family of James J "Coach Rig" Righeimer on his passing.

Program notes:

Check out my interview with Rosemont Mayor Brad Stephens about his land offer to the Chicago Cubs. Go to northtonorth.com and click on the video on the front page.

I will be at the broadcast studio at Score Las Vegas at the Luxor Hotel from 6-9 p.m. Saturday and 9 p.m. to midnight Sunday CST on Fox Sports radio, XM 169 and iHeart radio.

• Mike North's column appears each Tuesday and Friday in the Daily Herald, and his video commentary can be found Monday, Wednesday and Thursday at dailyherald.com. For more, visit northtonorth.com.

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