Facts suggest Pace's, Nagy's seats aren't nearly as hot as you think

  • Chicago Bears head coach Matt Nagy, right, talks with general manager Ryan Pace during NFL football training camp in Bourbonnais, Ill., in 2019. In their three years together they are 28-21, have been to the playoffs twice, Pace has been the NFL Executive of the Year and Nagy the league's best coach.

    Chicago Bears head coach Matt Nagy, right, talks with general manager Ryan Pace during NFL football training camp in Bourbonnais, Ill., in 2019. In their three years together they are 28-21, have been to the playoffs twice, Pace has been the NFL Executive of the Year and Nagy the league's best coach. Associated Press file photo

 
 
Updated 3/25/2021 8:23 PM

I am here to put to rest the greatest myth in Chicago sports, that Ryan Pace and Matt Nagy are in make-it-or-break-it years with the Bears. That it's a deep playoff run or the grim reaper. Or that there is any historical evidence in the NFL to suggest there would even be any justification for them to be on such thin ice.

I am not here to defend, support them or comment on whether or not they're good at their jobs.

 

I'm here to talk facts.

In their three years together they are 28-21, have been to the playoffs twice, Pace has been the NFL Executive of the Year and Nagy the league's best coach.

I get that's not good enough for many. Call it luck if you must, but expert analysts and -- even more importantly -- their peers gave them those awards. That's all that matters.

Find me a single example in NFL history of a GM-coach duo with that record and those credentials that has been fired for their efforts.

And there is still something far more important that should disavow you all of the belief Pace and Nagy go to work every day with their bags packed and homes on the market.

There is one man only with the ability to make a change, and that is George McCaskey.

If he was even thinking about a change, can anyone provide a single quote or comment he's given that says anything but the opposite?

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I'd submit the reason McCaskey's and Ted Phillips' season-ending presser was such a disaster was because while they were prepared for disappointment over the 2020 season, they never serious considered firing anybody.

Look at what they've actually said:

From McCaskey, "My approach to an evaluation process is to take an individual's body of work and say based on that body of work -- not on any one decision or any one game or any one season -- does that merit continuing with that person.

"And in the case of both Ryan and Matt, we decided that the answer was yes."

He added later, "As far as what we need to see, we need to see progress. It's not a certain number of wins. We don't know what's going to happen in the 2021 season.

"We just had an unprecedented event during the 2020 season, so we don't know what injuries are going to occur, what other challenges are going to arise, but we've got to see progress. We need to see improvement. We're not satisfied with where we are now, but we think both Ryan and Matt are the people best able to lead us to success."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

If McCaskey thinks Pace and Nagy should be fired, how has Phillips kept his job the last 21 years?

Look at what Pace and Nagy have done so far.

In spite of a bunch of unsubstantiated rumors and unverified reports of attempts, there have been no big swings or needle-moving moves.

Damien Williams is a nice addition and Jeremiah Attaochu is probably an upgrade over Barkevious Mingo.

But they have done the equivalent of nothing at tackle. They still don't have a second starting safety. Cordarrelle Patterson remains on the street. And with the swap of Mitch Trubisky for Andy Dalton and release of Kyle Fuller they are almost certainly a lesser team today than they were when they got on the plane home from New Orleans after being bounced from the playoffs by the Saints.

Yes, there is still the draft to come and plenty of decent free agents out there, but really does that sound like management in fear for its life?

Pace and Nagy are neither the best nor the worst. They are good men with real accomplishments looking to get better with the assets they have.

Wouldn't it make some sense to just root for these guys? According to everything we know they aren't going anywhere.

• Twitter: @Hub_Arkush

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