Chicago Bears fans were either not happy or not convinced by the hiring of Matt Eberflus as the new head coach. They felt he wasn’t what the franchise needed. In truth, the opposite might already be proving true. Not just because of his clear high standards as a coach, demanding maximum effort and intelligence from every single player. It’s also becoming apparent that he is fully embracing the rich history of the Bears organization. He is doing this by opening a door that has remained shut for what feels like decades. A door for Bears legends to return. Jimbo Covert was the first to experience this.
The Hall of Fame left tackle is every bit as dedicated to the Bears as he was 40 years ago. However, like many others, he’s been frustrated by the organization not making a more concerted effort to let people like him give back. Be around the building offering advice to younger players. Others like Olin Kreutz, Charles Tillman, and Jerry Azumah have voiced similar displeasure. Now it appears Eberflus is taking the first step in fixing that as Covert explained to Adam Hoge of NBC Sports Chicago.
Keep in mind Eberflus was under no obligation to do that.
He did it because he wanted to. This shouldn’t be a surprise. The Bears head coach has a deep appreciation of this team’s history. Dick Butkus was his favorite NFL player growing up in Ohio. One can imagine he sent a similar message to the iconic linebacker. It remains unclear why the McCaskey family chose to distance the team from past greats as they have. George Halas often did the opposite, bringing several former players back as assistant coaches or scouts during his long time owning the team.
While the same isn’t likely to happen with Jimbo Covert and others, it is a step in the right direction. For all the talk about the Bears being a family, it feels like this one has been fractured for a long time. Eberflus is a big believer in unity. By repairing the relationship between team and ex-players, it should serve everybody well in the long run.
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