Hoge’s Notes: Ditka Makes Return To Halas Hall
By Adam Hoge-
HALAS HALL (CBS) A lot has changed at the newly renovated Halas Hall, but for a moment Tuesday, the practice field had a look from 20 years ago.
Mike Ditka was the Bears’ practice Tuesday, standing on the sideline observing and addressing the team when the workout was over.
“His message was a great one,” head coach Marc Trestman said. “It’s about the relationships that you have with your teammates, it’s about the camaraderie, it’s about the locker room. The money is the least significant portion of it. I think that’s pretty universal in the game of football when you’ve been around it a long time and the rest of it I’ll leave to our players what he said.”
Trestman first reached out to Ditka after he got the job last January and the two of them ended up going out to dinner with their wives. It may just be a coincidence, but since then, the organization has started repairing their relationship with the Super Bowl XX-winning head coach who was fired by the Bears in 1993. Most notably, his No. 89 jersey will be retired before the Dec. 9 game against the Cowboys.
“I called him last week with the idea to bring him to come by and see Halas Hall and the new facility and spend some time with our players and say hello to them and he graciously agreed to do that and we certainly appreciate the fact that he came out here today to be with us,” Trestman said.
The head coach added that Ditka has an open invitation to come by any time he would like.
Cutler Not Thinking About Targets
The Bears made it pretty clear in the offseason that they want to spread the ball around more this season. That included Brandon Marshall and Jay Cutler, but now the quarterback seems to be getting a little frustrated with the concern over him targeting Marshall on all five of his passes last week against the Chargers.
Asked Tuesday by Sun-Times columnist Rick Morrissey if throwing the ball to other receivers besides Marshall will be on his mind Friday night in Oakland, Cutler simply replied: “It will not.” Morrissey then replied, “I’m sorry?” and Cutler again responded “It will not.”
So that’s settled.
– Cutler said Alshon Jeffery had the best training camp of all the receivers.
– Rookie right tackle Jordan Mills called Kyle Long’s pancake block last week against the Chargers “the ultimate.”
– Asked about meeting Mike Ditka, tight end Martellus Bennett said: “Anytime you get to meet history — if I could meet Jesus I would, so I’m always looking for a piece of history.”
Adam Hoge covers the Bears for CBSChicago.com and is a frequent contributor to 670 The Score. Follow him on Twitter at @AdamHoge.