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George McCaskey: Brian Urlacher a member of Bears’ “pantheon”

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In a statement issued by the team Wednesday, Bears chairman George H. McCaskey paid public tribute to retiring middle linebacker Brian Urlacher — and painted a clear picture of what Urlacher has meant to the franchise.

Here is the text of McCaskey’s statement:

“How lucky we were that Brian Urlacher was a Chicago Bear.

“Brian announced his retirement in the same, understated way in which he carried himself at Halas Hall the last 13 years — he simply wanted to be one of the guys and play the game he loves.  But his rare ability, work ethic and passion for football put him among the greats to ever play the game.

“Besides superlative play on the field, he was also the unquestioned leader in the locker room, as well as the sometimes reluctant face of the franchise. Brian is a special person who represented our team and our city with skill and humility while never seeking acclaim or recognition.

“In the pantheon of Bears, Brian has earned his place alongside Halas, Grange, Nagurski, Ditka, Payton — and yes, Bill George, Butkus and Singletary.

“We congratulate Brian on a brilliant career and he will continue to be a welcomed member of the Bears Family in retirement.”

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9 Responses to “George McCaskey: Brian Urlacher a member of Bears’ “pantheon””
  1. larryboodry says: May 22, 2013 4:32 PM

    Great tribute statement by McCaskey.

  2. godofwine330 says: May 22, 2013 4:34 PM

    Is Brian Urlacher a Hall of Famer? Thumbs up for yes, Thumbs down for no. He is an 8 time pro bowler and 4 time 1st team All-Pro

  3. unbiasfan says: May 22, 2013 4:36 PM

    Brian Urlacher should have ended his career the right way..winning a Super Bowl ring on the Minnesota Vikings

  4. asimonetti88 says: May 22, 2013 4:38 PM

    Sounds like George McCaskey is voting for Brian Urlacher to be on the Bears’ Mt. Rushmore.

  5. larryboodry says: May 22, 2013 4:39 PM

    @unbiasfan:

    Vikings win a Super Bowl this year? You’ll be lucky to finish third in the division.

  6. Pacific NW Mark says: May 22, 2013 6:37 PM

    Classy statement by McCaskey and the Bears.

  7. rextraordinaire says: May 22, 2013 7:18 PM

    And #54 was never worn again

  8. tdstevie says: May 22, 2013 7:34 PM

    As a Packer fan, I have nothing but respect for Brian Urlacher and all his accomplishments on and off the field…he played the game the right way and he was/is a true class act…congrats on your retirement Mr. Urlacher

  9. wnstonchill says: May 22, 2013 9:26 PM

    I’ve seen Dick Butkus play, I’ve seen Mike Singletary play and of course, I’ve seen Brian Urlacher play. Each of these linebackers was great in there own way with a style they owned. Butkus was the toughest of all of them, Singletary was the greatest leader of them, and Brian Urlacher was by far, the greatest athlete of all of them. Here’s where Urlacher deserves as much accolades as those guys and maybe even more. Urlacher possessed outstanding leadership skills as well and over his 13 year career, proved he was tough as well.
    As tough as it is to compare these guys in 3 different era’s, overall, in my opinion, Brian Urlacher is the best linebacker in Chicago Bear history. He should be put in the hall of fame tomorrow!

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