Brian Urlacher says the Bears are plagued by the “Lovie Smith curse”

AP

Former Chicago Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher believes his former team is cursed.

“The Lovie Smith Curse” to be exact.

In an interview with Tiki Barber and Brandon Tierney on CBS Sports Radio, Urlacher cited the departure of Smith after the 2012 season as the point where things began to awry for the Bears. He also said he’s wondered what exactly the team is doing with their decisions this offseason.

I like to say it’s the Lovie Curse,” Urlacher said. “Because since he left [the Bears have struggled]. He got fired being 10-6. I think they fire him either way. Even if we go to the playoffs, I think they fire him. I don’t think the G.M. liked the way he coached the football team.

“The guy’s a winner. I love playing for him. I don’t know what the identity of that team is. They sign [Mike] Glennon, then they draft a kid No. 2. I don’t know what [they’re doing]. It’s confusing.”

The Bears have certainly struggled since Smith was fired following the 2012 season. They haven’t posted a winning record in any of the four seasons since and are on their second head coach since then as well. The 3-13 record last season was the worst by a Bears team since the schedule expanded to 16 games in 1978.

Chicago made the playoffs three times during Smith’s tenure, including a Super Bowl appearance in 2006. The 10-6 season posted by the Bears in 2012 was the fourth-best record in nine years under Smith. Nevertheless, Emery decided to change course after the year.

Urlacher also defended former Bears quarterback Jay Cutler and said he was just as surprised as anyone by Cutler’s decision to move into the broadcast booth instead of continuing his career. He also said he hopes Trubisky is as good as his draft position would tend to suggest.

“I hope this kid is unbelievable,” Urlacher said. “I hope Mitch Trubisky is the best quarterback of all time. He looks like a stud. He’s 6-2, 6-3, put together, good-looking kid, he seems really nice – I hope they do really well. Their defense is going to be good this year. They were good last year and they had so many young guys play that it’s only going to help them this year.”

30 responses to “Brian Urlacher says the Bears are plagued by the “Lovie Smith curse”

  1. Look, I’m a traditional Packers fan. The greatest rivalry is also the longest in NFL history, starting when the game was played by men.

    I was relieved when Lovie was canned – because he made that team. He was the difference maker. All things being equal, I’ve always respected the Bears organization (their fans are another story altogether). When Lovie was there, those teams carried a certain amount of quiet character. They played the game the way it was supposed to be played.

    At the end of the 2010 season, Lovie played his starters against the Packers even though the Bears had won the division. A Packer win and they were in the playoffs … a loss and they were out. Lovie played his starters right to the bitter end. The man won my admiration from that day forward.

    Thank god for the McCaskey family.

  2. As a Packers fan, I am glad the Bears have been a bad team since Lovie Smith left. I think what Urlacher is saying is true.

    The biggest mistake they made was signing Jay Cutler. Cutler was an enigma. All the talent in the world but a seemingly aloof player.

  3. George Hallas knew this: you need good football players to win.
    Since Hallas, with the exception of the Mike Ditka coaching era, the remnants of the Hallas legacy have proven over and over that they won’t pay good players, can’t keep good players, can’t find decent coaches, (Smith the exception) and simply are cheap when they don’t have to be.

    Urlacher was an exception as well.

    John Fox proved to be a good coach in Denver but has run up against the front office which has proven yet again they are small in a big pants world.

  4. Couldn’t get a new updated picture of Urlacher with hair? That’s the only reason I clicked on this article. Looks like a completely different guy with hair.

  5. Urlacher is correct bears and browns( maybe the colts too)are the only reason my niners are not the most incompetent franchise.

  6. Hey Brian – how about clueless ownership??? Where does that fit in your equation? Chicago and Cleveland…what do they have in common? Just asking.

  7. I’m hoping Lovie will become defensive coordinator of the Packers once Dom Capers retires.

  8. hodag54501 says:
    Jul 4, 2017 7:37 AM
    George Hallas knew this: you need good football players to win.
    Since Hallas, with the exception of the Mike Ditka coaching era, the remnants of the Hallas legacy have proven over and over that they won’t pay good players, can’t keep good players, can’t find decent coaches, (Smith the exception) and simply are cheap when they don’t have to be.

    Urlacher was an exception as well.

    John Fox proved to be a good coach in Denver but has run up against the front office which has proven yet again they are small in a big pants world.

    —————————————-

    its halas.

  9. I’d say the Bears’ downturn from the middle of 2012 onwards (started 7-1, ended 3-5 and no playoffs) was caused by the curse of Urlacher being injured mid-season then retiring – Lovie Smith was hit by that curse! There was also the curse of Cutler, who was ranked 24th that season and whose mediocre quality (career games 68-71, career rating 85.7) was kept relevant in Chicago until the loss of Urlacher:-

    Cutler with Bears when Urlacher played = 19-10
    Cutler with Bears when Urlacher didn’t play = 26-40

  10. We all like to play General Manager. It’s fun. That’s why there’s Fantasy Football. It’s a billion dollar business. But it’s also fantasy. Urlacher might be a good GM. Who knows? But questioning why the Bears finally have two good QB’s is not a good sign. There are certainly a lot of question marks, but adding Glennon and Trubisky makes the next decade look really bright for The Bears. There are many other pieces to the puzzle, but the most valuable pieces are already in place.

  11. I’ve always felt they made a huge mistake in letting Urlacher walk as well. While father time had diminished his physical skills a bit, he was still the brains of that defense, which was formidable at the time.

  12. Lovie smith himself is cursed as well. He hasnt had a winning season since being fired from the bears either. Probably never will again. Maybe it was the firing from the bears but Lovie lost whatever good he had going for him. He had some of the worst coached seasons in Buccaneer history. And that is saying something. The bucs started their franchise 0-27. But were still better coached than lovie smith seasons were. It’s an NFL tragedy what Lovie had become. Oh well, lovie sucks, bears still suck. The world goes on!

  13. I don’t consider Lovie a winner, first of all.

    Second, as an outsider, to me the Bears has a curse in the GM position more than anything else.

    And finally I am happy for Brian that the Bears drafted a good-looking quarterback who is put together well.

  14. As a Packer fan my favorite member of “Da Bears” was Jerry Angelo, former GM from 2001 – 2011.
    I remember the day he traded the franchise for Jay Cutler and the Bears fans were gushing how they were on the fast track for a Super Bowl win with Cutler.
    I posted “Be careful what you wish for”.

    Nothing more need be said !!

  15. sorry Brian it is the curse of bears management of being stupid in hiring his replacement. they hired trestman instead of Arians and that set them back 5 years at least. it was time for lovie to go, he had taken them as far as his aging defense could but never understood offense was part of the game. he showed that by hiring a new and even more incompetent oc’s every season. he really showed his stupidity in naming josh mccown his starter the day he was hired at tampa. how did that work out for him? they were so scared he would mess up winston they fired him rather than take a chance of that happening.

  16. Shown by most of his time in Chicago, every minute in Tampa, Lovie is a awful, awful HC. When he was with the Bucs especially it looked as if his teams were 30 years behind current NFL trends. Jameis Winston became a better QB the day Lovie was fired.

  17. tonebones says:
    Jul 4, 2017 10:08 AM
    We all like to play General Manager. It’s fun. That’s why there’s Fantasy Football. It’s a billion dollar business. But it’s also fantasy. Urlacher might be a good GM. Who knows? But questioning why the Bears finally have two good QB’s is not a good sign. There are certainly a lot of question marks, but adding Glennon and Trubisky makes the next decade look really bright for The Bears. There are many other pieces to the puzzle, but the most valuable pieces are already in place

    ===========================

    parcells always said if u have two qbs then u dont have one good qb.

  18. >They sign [Mike] Glennon, then they draft a kid No. 2. I don’t know what [they’re doing]. It’s confusing.”

    It’s not confusing at all Brian, and that you’re confused is why you don’t have the intelligence to ever be a head coach in the league.

    They signed Glennon as a short term solution. Trubisky is their quarterback of the future, their long term solution. Glennon is supposed to tutor the kid until that time the kid is ready to take over.

    The Bears are doing it the RIGHT WAY, they’re not throwing the kid to the wolves before he’s ready. What’s confusing about that?

  19. The Lovie Smith curse is what doomed Lovie in Chicago and Tampa. He did not know how to put together an offense or hire someone who knew how to coach an offense. It always looked to me that Lovie was thinking “who need a stinking offense” we will win it on defense. Also the Tampa II was not working and he refused to change.

  20. 1) You place the “Lovie Smith curse” in quotes several times, when, according to your own article, Urlacher called it the “Lovie curse.” Quotation marks are traditionally used to signify verbatim quotes, not to convey wishful thinking, clarifications, or the need for “click counts” on the part of an author.

    2) Urlacher was a superb and inspiring player, one of the best ever at his position, but he’s done. He’s had his kick at the cat. His career is long over and he’s well on his way to becoming another irrelevant media-coverage junkie like Ray Lewis, Brett Favre, and Archie Manning.

    3) With no disrespect intended, if Urlacher’s words truly represent his thought patterns and the way his mind works (and remember – he was talking to Tiki Barber, the role model for integrity, clear thinking, and concise narrative), it’s becoming increasingly obvious why he was never a serious candidate for the coaching profession.

  21. Oh yeah, and #4) Nice guy, but John Fox is a recycled retread who is set in his ways. Ways which worked alright at best in the previous NFL generation. I think he’s lost in this new game.

  22. thejetssuck2001 says:
    Jul 4, 2017 11:32 AM
    tonebones says:
    Jul 4, 2017 10:08 AM
    We all like to play General Manager. It’s fun. That’s why there’s Fantasy Football. It’s a billion dollar business. But it’s also fantasy. Urlacher might be a good GM. Who knows? But questioning why the Bears finally have two good QB’s is not a good sign. There are certainly a lot of question marks, but adding Glennon and Trubisky makes the next decade look really bright for The Bears. There are many other pieces to the puzzle, but the most valuable pieces are already in place

    ===========================

    parcells always said if u have two qbs then u dont have one good qb.
    _______________________________________
    Parcells was always blowing smoke. Most teams carry 3 QBs in the regular season. Some carry 2. NO teams carry just 1, good or otherwise. And before you correct me, New England has Brady and Garoppolo (only an example). Are you saying they don’t have at least one good QB?

  23. Those of you questioning Urlacher’s intelligence must have watched a completely different Bears team than I did. He absolutely commanded that defense, consistently putting guys in the right positions to make plays.

    Aaron Rodgers always said Urlacher was his absolute favorite guy to play against due to the chess match atmosphere at the line of scrimmage as they went back and forth through their checks and changes.

    I don’t know how anybody can not respect Urlacher.

  24. With the turnover of former superstars like Brian Urlacher, Lance Briggs, Devon Hester, Matt Forte, Charles Tillman, Julius Peppers, and Henry Melton, without adequately replacing those stars with new ones, as well as Brandon Marshall’s regular riding himself out of town and Alshon Jeffery’s injury bug that lasted several seasons, Lovie would have went from 10-6 to 7-9 (or worse) and been fired anyways.

    It’s funny how a strong roster can make a coach look good and vice-a-versa.

    P.S. Long story short, Lovie wouldn’t have done jack-squat with the rosters of the past 4 seasons.

  25. Parcels is a legend in his own mind, FYI Pats have 3 qb’s , Tom Jimmy and Jacoby, get it straight. So what will numb nuts parcels say about this???

  26. gbpackfan3 says:

    “The Bears went to the Super Bowl with Rex Grossman. This was the Jay Cutler curse.”

    actually they went with kyle orton who won ten in row when rex got hurt.

    then lovie benched orton before the superbowl for rex who hadn’t played in over two months.

    so you didn’t actually watch their games that year.

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