Brian Urlacher wasn’t happy when Lovie Smith got fired
Not all Bears players in the locker room then, including Brian Urlacher, were happy when head coach Lovie Smith was canned following the 2012 season. Smith was fired by one of the worst Bears general managers of all time, Phil Emery, after just one season with Smith. Emery replaced Smith with Canadian Football League head coach Marc Trestman.
Brian Urlacher fired away on Smith’s firing during a “Bussin’ With the Boys” podcast. The Hall of Fame linebacker didn’t have many nice things to say about Emery. Especially on his handling of the Bears head coaching situation. Here’s the transcription of Urlacher’s comments via Logan Mullen of Audacy:
“I didn’t like the way they handled it,” Urlacher said during an appearance on the “Bussin’ with the Boys” podcast. “They fired our GM the year before, and honestly how the f–k do you fire Lovie after you go 10-6? You fire Lovie after we go 10-6, we didn’t make the playoffs. Minnesota decides to beat Green Bay on the last game of the year and they hadn’t beaten Green Bay in like five years.
“They beat Green Bay, knocked us out of the playoffs, and then they fired Lovie and I was like, ‘What the f–k are y’all doing?’ And then they didn’t win 10 games like the next seven years. After Lovie left, they had a hard time winning games.
“It’s just like, why fire the guy? And I know why they fired him, because the new GM was a weirdo and he didn’t like winning, so he fired Lovie … It’s frustrating because obviously I love that franchise, so it’s frustrating to see the direction it went after they fired Lovie.”
Serious shade by Brian Urlacher but Smith needed to go
I don’t blame Brian Urlacher for wanting to stay with Smith. Smith took the Bears to the Super Bowl and was a game away from going again in 2011. And the Bears have been pretty awful other than 2018 since Smith parted with the Bears.
Smith, however, needed to be fired. The Bears needed a fresh start with a new coach who could bring energy back to the locker room and fire the team-up. Smith and the Bears had missed out on five of the last six playoff appearances following the 2006 season. The Bears needed to make the playoffs that season.
While the Bears were a divisional rival’s game outcome away from the playoffs in 2012, it shouldn’t have been left up to chance in the first place. The Bears started out the season 7-1 before losing five of their next six games. (Smith would lose a lot more at his next NFL head coaching job in Tampa Bay.)
That season the Bears were swept by the Green Bay Packers. That’s one major reason why he needed to go. Smith said when he was hired that his goal was to “beat Green Bay“. His failure to win one game against the Packers that season cost the Bears a playoff spot.
Brian Urlacher was right about Emery
Emery was a special kind of stupid general manager. The kind that could only hide how terrible he was at his job for three seasons before being asked to leave. Emery tanked the Bears after Smith by putting in charge a head coach whose previous job in the NFL was half-a-decade earlier as a consultant for the New Orleans Saints.
Firing Smith wasn’t the issue. It was Emery bringing the Bears an inexperienced Trestman who didn’t know how to get the termites out of Hallas Hall that let the team rot. It was a waste of the end of Brian Urlacher’s career.
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