Chicago Bears tight end Zach Miller has no interest in watching the play that ended his season and required nine surgeries to repair his PCL and LCL … not that we blame him.
“I’ve seen still shots of it, pictures of it, on accident,” Miller told Omaha, Neb., radio host Scott Voorhees. “Maybe a week ago was the first time I was able to look at the picture and not turn away. I don’t know if I’ll watch the video, if I ever will.
In the Bears’ Week 8 loss to the New Orleans Saints, Miller had a touchdown taken away from him upon review after suffering the gruesome injury. The veteran tight end hasn’t completely ruled out a return to the game, but admits “we’ve got to move on and do something else” as he knows a return might not happen. In any case, best wishes and continued health for Miller moving forward.
- The rave reviews continue to pour in for the Bears’ new head coach. Nick Foles, who worked with Matt Nagy in Philadelphia and Kansas City, thinks Nagy will do great things with the Bears and says the team is fortunate to have him on their side. “Last year was one of the most fun years I’ve had playing the game of football and Matt Nagy was a big reason for that,” Foles said, via Larry Mayer of the Chicago Bears’ official website.
- Dallas Robinson of Pro Football Rumors notes that Adrian Amos is among a group of players who will get a little bump in pay based on the proven performance escalator for players drafted after the third round because of the amount of playing time they have earned. Robinson estimates that number will be around $1.908 million in 2018. That’s quite a bargain for Amos, who graded out as the best free safety in football in 2017.
- At least Amos’ efforts and the Bears’ general defensive prowess didn’t go unnoticed in 2017. While appearing on WGN Radio’s Sports Central with Adam Hoge, Minnesota Vikings tight end Kyle Rudolph was quite complimentary of Vic Fangio’s unit. “That defense is a lot better than their defenses of the past,” Rudolph said. He isn’t wrong. Rudolph entered the league in 2011 and the Bears have ranked in the bottom third in scoring defense four times in seven years.
- And to think, Vic Fangio’s can stand to be better. Andrew Dannehy of Da Bears Brothers blog highlights slow starts as one of the Bears’ biggest issues that need to be cleaned up in 2018. The Bears weren’t built to play from behind in recent years, and despite finishing in the top 10 in points allowed, early scores from the opposition made it tough for the Bears to overcome even the smallest deficits.
- Kyle Long has taken some unfair criticism in the wake of a pair of injury riddled seasons, but his commitment to his team and his teammates is unwavering:
— Kyle (@Ky1eLong) January 31, 2018
- Once he returns to the practice field, Long will be working with Donovan Raiola, who was recently hired as the Bears’ Assistant Offensive Line Coach. Donovan is the younger brother of former Lions center Dominic Raiola and worked under Harry Hiestand at Notre Dame.
- The Bears aren’t the only team banking on brighter days behind a new head coach. NBC analyst Cris Collinsworth believes there is too much good stuff on the Detroit Lions roster to continue to scuffle as they have been since, well, for as long as I can remember. Super Bowl dreams in the Motor City? Collinsworth seems to think so. “I just think the Lions at some point are going to make it happen,” Collinsworth said, via Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press. “They have too much talent there to not.” As for how soon “it” can “happen” … Collinsworth wasn’t sure. “We’ll see what old Matty can do,” he said, referring to future Lions Head Coach Matt Patricia, who is currently the Patriots’ Defensive Coordinator.
- The Chiefs announced the retirement of Assistant Head Coach Brad Childress, ending a lengthy coaching career that included a five-year stint as the Vikings’ head coach from 2006 until 2010. Childress went 39-35 and had two playoff appearances with Minnesota and was a long-time offensive coordinator, whose teams ranked in the top half of the league in scoring seven times in 11 seasons. Considering he served as a mentor for Matt Nagy while in Kansas City, here’s hoping the Bears’ new head coach learned a thing or two from the 61-year-old Chidlress.
- Over at Forbes, Maury Brown breaks down FOX’s deal with the NFL for the rights to broadcast Thursday Night Football. Among the things still to be determined is who will be on the call when the games go on the air. It doesn’t look like Joe Buck and Troy Aikman will add a second game to their work load, leaving Ken Fang of AwfulAnnouncing.com to list some of the other potential candidates. Of this grouping, I’m most intrigued by Gus Johnson as a play-by-play guy because I think he does good work on FOX’s college football programming. Adding Thursday Night Football to his plate would make Johnson a busy beaver, as he already does Saturday football as well as some Milwaukee Bucks basketball games. We wouldn’t be opposed to the Kevin Burkhardt-Charles Davis team, especially if they were able to add Jay Cutler – as was expected last offseason before he returned to football.
- Had the Jaguars not coughed up a 10-point fourth quarter lead, the Super Bowl would have made for a fun ending for this much-maligned design. Alas, it wasn’t meant to be:
Say goodbye to this piece of (art). The Pro Bowl will be the final game for Jaguars in the widely mocked, two-tone helmet pic.twitter.com/4C3p2awA2Z
— Mark Long (@APMarkLong) January 28, 2018