Ryan Poles was a hot candidate even before the Chicago Bears interviewed him last month. He’d already been a finalist for the Carolina Panthers job in 2021 before it went to Scott Fitterer. Then it became common knowledge that the Minnesota Vikings were prepared to hire him as GM before George McCaskey swooped in to snag him with his now-iconic O’Hair airport pickup. Time will tell if it was the right decision, but if it was, that moment will go down in Bears history.
The story gets even better, though. It turns out Minnesota wasn’t the only team coveting Poles this offseason. According to Jordan Raanan of ESPN, the New York Giants were really hoping to get Poles in their front office. They liked him a lot. However, there was one problem. They wanted him as an assistant GM. It was clear their top job was reserved for Joe Schoen, somebody they’d coveted for months. Their hopes were dashed when the Bears made their move.
Further confirmation the Bears did the right thing.
There is no telling whether Ryan Poles will be a success. Evidence, either way, won’t come for at least the next two years. Still, it can’t be a coincidence that so many teams came away so impressed with him. It is a surefire sign that his personality and plan to build a winner came across as intelligent and sound. He certainly seems like a person with total self-confidence in himself and his vision.
That is always the most crucial part of the job. The hard part is executing it. As Ryan Pace found out, his well-laid plans derailed because he messed up the most critical decisions. Poles’ first was hiring Matt Eberflus as head coach. His quarterback choice will be to stick with Justin Fields for now. Not surprising. The big challenge is retooling the roster given how limited his resources are.
Good GMs find a way around such problems. It will be fun watching him work over the next two months.
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