If Brian Urlacher returns to the Bears, it won’t be because of the emotional appeal.
Bears chairman George McCaskey told Kevin Seifert of ESPN that as much as the fan in him wanted the middle linebacker to remain, the businessman in him would not handcuff his football people by dictating such a decision.
“As a fan, of course you want him back,” McCaskey said. “He’s been the face of the franchise. He’s been an outstanding player, a Hall of Fame career. But I’ve tried to assure Bears fans since I became chairman that I don’t involve myself in player personnel decisions unless there is a question of character. Of course, there is no question about Brian’s character.
“So you have to leave that to the pros, the guys that make the evaluations, and hope for the best.”
That’s not the best news for the 34-year-old linebacker. While McCaskey’s seen Urlacher’s entire career as a Bear, general manager Phil Emery has come in on the tail end of it, when Urlacher looks more like a guy who used to be great but is beginning to slow.
And while that player is one it would be easy to overpay based on emotion, McCaskey taking himself out of the process means it’s more likely that Emery can stick to his guns, and hold firm to a value on Urlacher that’s probably much less than what Urlacher’s looking for.