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Bears GM has no regrets over handling of Urlacher

Phil Emery AP

There are veterans the Bears might want to bring back, but general manager Phil Emery said he had no regrets over the handling of linebacker Brian Urlacher’s contract situation.

Absolutely not,” Emery said, via Chris Boden of CSNChicago.com. “It was a very straight-forward process. We had a very honest and open exchange between Brian’s representatives. There was no lack of clarity. No surprises. Brian’s been a great player, a Hall of Fame player. He’s done great things for the Chicago Bears.

“We’ve committed more resources to Brian than any Bear in the history of the organization. We were willing to commit more. In the end, we just couldn’t agree to what that amount was, and it’s no more than that.”

Of course, Emery was willing to commit at a far lower level this time through, offering him a take-it-or-leave-it $1.5 million offer, which Urlacher not only left, but took as an insult.

That creates the possibility of some backlash among those who  played alongside Urlacher for so long, something Emery is sensitive to.

“Guys like Lance Briggs have stepped up and, in his very own way, has said some good things. Tim Jennings. That’s all been very positive from the players,” Emery said. “At the end of the day, all NFL players know there’s a ceiling to how long they can play, and they grab every day. I know these guys want to win championships.

“Obviously, they have some sadness, and I’d be shocked if they didn’t. I’d be concerned if they didn’t. Brian was a great player, a great person. I see that as a normal part of it. I think they’ve done a great job of re-gathering themselves and moving forward.”

While Urlacher was shown the door, Emery said he remains interested in bringing back defensive lineman Israel Idonije. Of course, that’s not going to be at the $2.5 million he made last year.

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19 Responses to “Bears GM has no regrets over handling of Urlacher”
  1. bigwinintx says: Apr 17, 2013 8:40 AM

    I hate to say it, but from purely a football standpoint, The Bears did the right thing with Urlacher.

    You only have a short period of time to play at your highest and then you start trailing off, and Urlacher was clearly not at the top of his game and injuries were becoming more and more nagging.
    The guy lost a step, plain and simple. And you cannot run an effective team by keeping old dogs around when younger faster dogs are chomping at the bit to get in the mix.

    Urlacher had his moment, and now it’s time to move on. Besides, I hardly doubt that another team is giving him the big bucks contract that he wants at the end of his career. The need for faster and not older legs is what the league is about.
    Ask Ray Lewis.

  2. britishteeth says: Apr 17, 2013 8:43 AM

    And I have no problem with the hiring of Emery. Very refreshing to hear frank, honest answers instead of the cryptic double-speak of Angelo and Lovie.

  3. ditkabutkus says: Apr 17, 2013 8:47 AM

    Emery’s a boss.

  4. louiespoon says: Apr 17, 2013 8:54 AM

    He said it right, Lach could still swallow his pride and return….

  5. briggsisbrokeagain says: Apr 17, 2013 9:12 AM

    It’s no crime to get old, that’s all that happened here. I wish Brian the best, but he should have taken the Bears offer. The reality is even if he plays this season, he’ll have a hard time staying healthy for 16 games, heck he missed 25% of the season last year. I don’t see any other team rushing to give him money. Maybe it’s time to retire?

  6. kabasaman says: Apr 17, 2013 9:27 AM

    Brian needs to either swallow his pride or retire. He has made millions of dollars playing a game. If he wants to play . He shouldn’t have said: “I will play for 2 million, but it won’t be for the Bears” Well , that’s bull shi$.

  7. chi01town says: Apr 17, 2013 10:02 AM

    Emery is 100% right. Urlacher needs to be done in Chicago. Its time to get younger on the defensive side of the ball and Urlacher is in the way of CHANGE.
    GO EMERY GO. plus its time for Cutler to be the face of the Chicago Bears like he was supposed to been since he got to Chicago.

  8. larryboodry says: Apr 17, 2013 10:18 AM

    Emery did the right thing, and handled the situation correctly…Not sure how you can say the Bears showed Urlacher the door, since they made him a fair offer which HE turned down.

    But hey, Darin never passes up a chance to spin his opinions in such a way that the Bears will always look bad…Facts be damned.

  9. thingamajig says: Apr 17, 2013 11:12 AM

    Urlacher will wish he took the Bears offer if he really wants to play this year. Can’t see any other team offering him more than 1.5 mil.

  10. henryd3rd says: Apr 17, 2013 12:34 PM

    He’s not the first super star who found out that he was expendable. Joe Namath ended his career in LA Ram, Joe Montana end his in KC Chief, Jerry Rice ended his career as a Seattle Seahawk and Ronnie Lott ended his career as a NY Jet.

    So Brian I get it; but the last time I looked Father Time is still undefeated.

  11. tokyosandblaster says: Apr 17, 2013 12:39 PM

    It’s so weird.

    I remember a LOT (not all) of Bears fans calling out the Packers and their fans for how they treated the Favre situation. Now it seems like you’re all ok with how you treated the face of your team for the last decade.

    The difference is, the Packers gave Favre what he wanted, and the Bears just showed Urlacher the door.

    I guess the term “hypocritical” doesn’t begin to cover it.

  12. LilTmac2003 says: Apr 17, 2013 12:40 PM

    In the end though, I do hope the Bears resign Urlacher for that $2mil offer. He’ll be a good presence. If not, than he should definitely retire.

    I used to always defend the players, until I seen the entire Olin Kruetz debacle.

    Kruetz was towards the end of his career. Wanted a $4.5mil contract from the Bears. Bears offered a $3mil. He rejected and said he still wanted the $4.5mil. Bears upped the offer and gave him a $4mil. He still rejected. Bears let him go.

    He later signed a contract with the Saints worth $2mil in which he ended up retiring b/c he lost passion for the game. That’s totally fine, but he had Bear blood in him.

  13. chi01town says: Apr 17, 2013 1:17 PM

    @tokyosandblaster
    Urlacher walked away from the best deal he was gone get. and Bears fans are cool with that. Emery
    can live with it too. This aint about Farve or the packers. This is about building a team that can run over Greenbay and Beat the 49ers

  14. tokyosandblaster says: Apr 17, 2013 1:56 PM

    Ah. So ultimately, it’s about failure.

  15. joebone says: Apr 17, 2013 3:31 PM

    It didn’t help that Brian has acted like a dick toward the fans and local media recently. Had a great career, a little overrated the past few years, but Hall of Fame all the way. Now time for a graceful exit.

  16. hippiedriver2 says: Apr 17, 2013 8:21 PM

    He’s washed up and should have retired last year and it was obvious on the television

  17. filthymcnasty1 says: Apr 17, 2013 10:48 PM

    Yeah, Urlacher was a great player. But his lasting legacy will be how he had the courage to call Bear fans a bunch of meatheads.

  18. dougy1970 says: Apr 18, 2013 4:02 AM

    I will miss watching him in all the Adrian Peterson highlights.

  19. larryboodry says: Apr 18, 2013 2:36 PM

    dougy1970 says: Apr 18, 2013 4:02 AM

    “I will miss watching him in all the Adrian Peterson highlights.”

    In ten career games against the Bears, AP has only cracked 100 yards five times, and the Vikes are 5-5 in those games, 2-4 from ’09-’12. And in AP’s two best games vs. Chicago (224 yds., 154 yds.), Urlacher didn’t even play, which may have contributed to Peterson’s gaudy #s. And of the 6 games Brian faced off against AP, the Bears won 4 of them.

    So go ahead, enjoy those highlights if it makes you feel better.

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