Angelo Out As Bears GM

UPDATED 01/03/12 1:25 p.m.

LAKE FOREST, Ill. (CBS) — After 11 seasons, Jerry Angelo is out as Bears general manager.

The news comes on the heels of the Bears’ 8-8 season that featured a five-game losing streak after Jay Cutler was injured.

There were rumors just a few weeks ago that Angelo would retire at the end of the season. But the Bears confirmed Tuesday that Angelo was fired, and his departure was not voluntary.

CBS 2’s Jill Carlson says Angelo’s downfall was his poor track record at drafting and evaluating talent, and making sure backup pieces are in place when key players go down.

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Silverman: Angelo Firing Richly Deserved

The result was that when Cutler and running back Matt Forte were injured, the team entered a downward spiral with backup quarterback Caleb Hanie struggling at the helm.

“Let’s not forget that the Bears were 7-3 at one point this season, before losing five straight, and I think it’s that inability, perhaps, to evaluate talent and have some of those key backups at key positions to absorb injuries, that in essence is his downfall,” Carlson said.

But WBBM Newsradio’s Jeff Joniak emphasized that Angelo’s tenure was one of the more successful in recent Bears history.

“The Bears are only one of 14 teams since Angelo’s arrival in 2001,” Joniak said. “Only four NFC teams won it.”

Angelo was hired in 2001. He fired Coach Dick Jauron three years later and hired Lovie Smith, who became the first coach to take the Bears to the Super Bowl since Mike Ditka.

He also led the team to four division titles, two NFC Championship game appearances and the Super Bowl appearance in his 11-year tenure as the head of the Bears football operations.

Altogether under Angelo, the Bears have had 98 wins and 85 losses, including during the playoffs.

Though he pulled off the biggest trade in Bears’ history when he traded for Jay Cutler in 2009, Angelo will be remembered for his poor drafts that ultimately led to his demise, Carlson says.

“Kudos for (acquiring Cutler), but then he didn’t surround Cutler with the talent necessary to be successful, in terms of an offensive line that could protect him; a true number one receiver that he could thrown to,” Carlson said. “He was the most sacked quarterback in the league.”

Forte, in fact, was the first offensive player drafted by Angelo to make the Pro Bowl, just this season.

If Hanie’s record had been better late in the season, the outcome for Angelo likely would be “entirely different,” Carlson said, “but I think that again goes to the lack of foresight.”

WBBM Newsradio’s Josh Liss confirmed in a Tweet that head coach Lovie Smith will return for the 2012 season.

The team will hold a press conference at 4pm at Halas Hall.

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  • boiler

    Hire Bill Polian and fire Mike Martz too

    • boiler

      hey. he quit before they could fire him. I guess he must have read my post this morning.

    • Dave

      All those in favor say “Ay” ……….. “Ay”.

  • Joey Joe

    me so happy… me so freaking happy

  • Denver Deadite

    Praise the football gods!

  • mike in davenport

    It will take a while to cycle through all of the awful drafts, but you have to start sometime.

  • jbiller

    If Angelo had fired that useless coach Lovie Smith a few years ago when he should have, Angelo would probably still have his job today. Lovie Smith is the reason the Bears can’t win. The man doesn’t even know what’s going on most of the time. Just look at his face whenever the TV cameras catch him on the sidelines…..blank and totally confused!!

    • D.O

      Yes, looking at the cover totally tells you what’s inside.

      It worked on Cutler, right?

    • Rick

      You can’t blame Lovie for the lack of talent.

      • Cameltoe Rancher

        Yeah der! Dat flat brim’s got no fire and he lacks passion!

        We need to resurrect Da’Coach, Mike Ditker.

        Holy Cr@p! Is dat my hero Mike Nort!?!?!?!?

        No question about da’fact of da’ matter!


    • kev in skokie

      Hopefully now we will be able to judge Lovie fairly, once he gets someone above him who can identify talent. If only half of Angelo’s busted picks were even on the roster, think how much better the Bears would be? Let alone if they had a homegrown star or two…


    I would like to know, who made the decision?
    there was one other player that knew that playbook as well as Jay Cutler–
    Johnny Knox,
    Anyone responsible for that offense cannot stay.

    • Sean Connery's Cackle

      You know how many times Knox ran the wrong route? It seemed like he was starting to “get it” right before Cutler went down but when Cutler was directing traffic, he was directing Knox as much as anyone else.

      • SPAULDING!

        Great handle, b.t.w. “what is the sound–a dog makes?”
        I was going with the idea that he was open, while others, overwhelmingly, were jammed off the line or, otherwise, nowhere near the arc of a pass. And Knox has his tragic reel.

  • kev in skokie

    DIng Dong the Witch is dead!!! Unfortunately probably a lil too late for some of our aging stars, whose window’s are almost closed. Great for the future tho!

  • Dan Rakow

    I blame Mr. Angelo for NOT giving Matt Forte a Contract extension and I pray and hope that the next General Manager for the Bears would give #22 a long term Contract.

  • Lil' Bycracke

    I guess the Bears told Jerry he could go whistle Dixie.


    “aux armes l’enfents de la patrie
    la jour de glorie
    est arrivee!”

    Mike Martz is resigning. He really must not like audibles.

  • Zuba: Angelo’s Top Picks – Where Are They Now? « CBS Chicago

    […] // // BREAKING NEWS: Jerry Angelo Out As Bears General Manager| Offensive Coordinator Mike Martz […]

  • Mike Martz Resigns « CBS Chicago

    […] // // BREAKING NEWS: Jerry Angelo Out As Bears General Manager| Offensive Coordinator Mike Martz […]

  • Silverman: Angelo Firing Richly Deserved « CBS Chicago

    […] // // BREAKING NEWS: Jerry Angelo Out As Bears General Manager| Offensive Coordinator Mike Martz […]

  • James Budzisz

    Bears Stink.

  • Alzo

    Does anyone recall whatever became of the draft pick Angelo traded for the late Gaines Adams? Answer: it eventually became… Rob Gronkowski. Ouch and double ouch.

  • A Corn

    For all you people who said Gaines Adams couldn’t “play dead” I guess you feel pretty foolish now. (Too soon?) Let’s just get the right guy in there and the Bears will be right back on top the division and winning a World Championship in 4 years.

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