If you live in Chicago you are in the echo chamber about the Bears – Bears news, commentary, predictions, some optimism, and despair. However – now that I’ve moved out of Chicago, I can see how irrelevant they are on the main stage. This pains me… and it pains me even more which OTHER franchises seem to stay “top of mind”.
The damn Packers! Near my place there is a semi-seedy bar covered in flags and what do I spy on top?
I see tourists every day tromping through my neighborhood… often they are wearing gear supporting their pro football or state college team. I hardly ever see anyone with anything from the Bears (and I’d probably be struck by lightning if I saw anything for the Illini) because the Bears are pretty much unknown here and in most of the country.
It makes sense, because we’ve sucked pretty much the whole time for anyone under, say, 40. The Bears won in 1985 and that was 30+ years ago so you’d have to be at least old enough to have been part of the media storm to care about them (or be someone who grew up hearing about them all the time).
Not only have we been terrible, pretty much all of our stars on the team are unknown. It is hilarious that the Bears are reaching way, way back into stars before my time on the new jerseys. After Walter Payton (note… that was a LONG time ago) there is hardly anyone and even Urlacher is mostly a nobody outside of Chicago.
It is so bad here there isn’t even really a “Bears” bar in Portland… but you can see all sorts of other teams including franchises like the Buffalo Bills and of course the Steelers and Packers. The Raiders too always band together and that’s a scary bunch.
It doesn’t help that we have had an awful offense this whole time… people do play fantasy football and if we had a lot of stars in that facet of the game we’d probably get more acknowledgment. And Dan and I have been banging the drum for offense the whole time (and hopeful that Trubisky will bring it).
I have to blame the McCaskey’s for all this. They’ve had this franchise forever and done nothing with it. They need to fix it or find someone who will. And sadly they likely won’t, and will pass this on to various members of their extended clan indefinitely. And we will remain irrelevant…