By Dan Durkin-
(CBS) The NFL’s day of reckoning — which has been infamously dubbed “Black Monday” — is just eight days away. Given the Bears’ deeply disappointing season, things are expected to be particularly dark at Halas Hall.
Numerous reports indicate that Chicago coach Marc Trestman is likely to be let go. He’s known as a great offensive mind, but Chicago’s offense has regressed significantly in the second year of Trestman’s installation, and the first sign of accountability this season resulted in quarterback Jay Cutler being benched for today’s game against Detroit.
Despite being benched, Cutler is likely to return to Chicago next season, according to a report from CBSSports.com’s Jason LaCanfora. The report indicates that the lucrative extension that Chicago general manager Phil Emery extended to Cutler is the primary road block to facilitate a trade.
In 2014, Cutler had the league’s highest cap number at $22.5 million. Cutler’s remaining $16 million of guaranteed money — $10 million of 2016 base salary, $6 million of 2017 salary — becomes fully guaranteed on the third day of the 2015 league year, which is March 12. Given those figures, teams are reportedly scared off from pursuing a trade.
Furthermore, Cutler’s reputation of being uncoachable will make it difficult to find a new coach willing to come in and take over the situation. However, Mike Shanahan, who was Denver’s head coach when the Broncos drafted Cutler in 2006, is said to be interested in reuniting with his former pupil.
Arizona Cardinals defensive coordinator Todd Bowles is also reported to be on Chicago’s short list of potential interviewees. San Francisco 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh, a former Bear, has been mentioned, but his salary demands are likely too rich for ownership’s liking.
The report also indicates that Emery believes his job may be safe, but given the decline the team has experienced since he took over, he’s on unstable ground.
Unlike the product on display at Soldier Field, Halas Hall will certainly be full of activity in the coming weeks.
Dan Durkin covers the Bears for CBSChicago.com and is a frequent contributor to 670 The Score. Follow him on Twitter at @djdurkin.