Chicago Bears: Ryan Poles' words should scare Matt Eberflus and his staff

Chicago Bears general manager Ryan Poles overhauled the roster and feels the team should compete more. That doesn't bode well for Matt Eberflus.
Chicago Bears
Chicago Bears / Todd Rosenberg/GettyImages

Chicago Bears general manager Ryan Poles had almost $100 million and the top overall pick in the draft to improve a roster that went 3-14 in 2022 and lost its last 10 games. He traded that top pick to the Carolina Panthers for a king's ransom. In addition to four draft picks, they also received wide receiver DJ Moore. Moore has been great for the team and is on his way to having the best season of his career.

However, the results in the win/loss column are similar to last season. One could argue that the play this season is worse than last season. In 2022, the team had an incredible lack of talent on the roster. The fact that they had eight one-score games was a positive.

This season, though, the Bears were expected to compete better. For the most part, they have. However, at this point, they still have only four wins to show for all the improvements made in the offseason. Yes, wins and losses are not high on the priority list. The development of the young players should be the priority. However, the way they are losing games is frustrating for many fans. They lost a few games they should have won. At others, they looked worse than they did last season.

The Bears gave up a 21-7 lead against the Denver Broncos and lost. They had a 26-14 lead with less than five minutes remaining in the game and lost. Against the New Orleans Saints, they had plenty of opportunities to win but failed to do so. Finally, the first time they faced the Minnesota Vikings they had an opportunity to take the lead late in the game but an interception thrown in front of the end zone sealed the loss.

Chicago Bears General Manager Ryan Poles went on the air to discuss the 2023 season and what he said echoes the fans' frustrations.

Before the Bears' game against the Vikings in Week 12 Ryan Poles went on the air. He was on WMVP AM-1000 and it appeared that he sent some messages. By the sound of it, head coach Matt Eberflus and his staff could be in some serious trouble.

Poles addressed the Bears; knack of blowing games that were sure-fire victories.

"You have to have a finishing mentality across the board -- for our entire staff and our entire team. So we have to take accountability for that and learn from it and finish strong."

Ryan Poles

If the Bears did not suffer late-game collapses in two games the Bears would be 6-6. If they finished the games against the Vikings (first matchup) and Saints, then, low and behold, they could be 8-4. Imagine how the city would be had that happened.

The next thing Poles spoke on was the defensive rotation that Eberflus has. We discovered that he has a platoon system. He said he has that so he can have his players fresh at the end of the game. However, the way he has the rotation ends up with his best players standing on the sideline in key situations.

That is what happened against the Lions. While Aidan Hutchinson, the Lions' best defender, played in 93 percent of the defensive snaps, Montez Sweat, who has transformed the Chicago Bears pass rush in the four games since the trade brought him to the team, played on only 63 percent of the snaps. When the Lions were marching down and scoring a key touchdown, Sweat was standing on the sideline.

Poles revealed that he spoke to Eberflus about the rotation. He talked about having the best players on the field during key game situations.

Neither of the two situations that Poles brought up are positive for Eberflus and his staff. When a team has its foot on the opponent that team has to keep it there until the end of the game. Offensive coordinator Luke Getsy has been, on many occasions, very conservative in his playcalling. Instead of playing to score touchdowns, he ends up having to settle for field goals.

When the Bears settle for field goals, their opponents are allowed to hand around. If the game is close at the end, anything can happen, and it has for the Chicago Bears. The coaches have to put their players in a situation where they can thrive. Getsy and Eberflus have not done that with the offense.

In terms of the second topic, it is amazing that someone has to remind the head coach that it is a good idea to have his best players on the field with the game on the line. It was not just Sweat. On the same drive that put the Lions ahead, linebacker Tremaine Edmunds was also on the sideline.

Understandably, you want your best players rested. However, you have to understand the situation. You cannot just be robotic, count the minutes, then take a player out. Additionally, Eberflus had to understand that the Lions would go with their two-minute offense. They would go no-huddle and that would prevent the Bears from substituting. Once he had Sweat off the field, it would be difficult to bring him back. That is what happened. Sweat could not get back into the game.

When they found out that Poles had that conversation with Eberflus, it did not make fans very happy. It seems like common sense to have your best players on the field with the game in the balance, right?

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It will be an interesting offseason for the Chicago Bears. Poles and team president Kevin Warren will have big decisions to make. From what Poles said recently, it seems like Eberflus faces a tough road to keeping his job. We shall see pretty soon.