Retired Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher would have fit right in with Mike Ditka’s teams.
But the older of the two Bears legends told the younger he should probably move past the emotions of his abrupt departure from the team.
Urlacher said this week he didn’t wish ill on the Bears, but didn’t want them to win a Super Bowl without him, either. That’s understandable, after General Manager Phil Emery gave him the contractual cold shoulder this offseason.
“My advice would be to put it behind you,” Ditka said, via the Chicago Sun-Times. “Brian has been such a great player for the Bears and an ambassador for the team. Not many guys get to play 13 years for the same team. Usually, when you change GMs and a new regime comes in, they’re going to make tough decisions. Mr. Emery decided that Brian wouldn’t be part of the plan.
“There’s nothing you can do about it. You know, the game of football was very good to Brian, but it owes him nothing now. You just have to move on.”
Of course, Ditka had his own hard feelings with the organization upon leaving, with the retiring of his jersey number 89 signaling a thaw to the freeze which began when Mike McCaskey fired him after the 1992 season. That took decades, so perhaps Urlacher deserves a few months to let his feelings be hurt.