Bears Unveil New Nike Threads

photo by Sean Jensen - Chicago Sun-Times

After all the hoopla regarding the unveiling of Nike’s new line of NFL uniforms, the Chicago Bears threads look…basically the same, their classic “old school” look maintained. The Bears will debut their new Nike lighter and tighter uniforms this upcoming season. The other 31 NFL teams will be rocking new Nike uniforms as well because the company struck a deal with the NFL for the next five years.

There are a few key changes to the Bears new uniform, Nike worked hand in hand with Bears head equipment manager Tony Medlin, who kept the players in the loop. The jerseys are lighter, snugger, with shorter sleeves (this gives opponents less to grab onto), they obviously have the Nike swoop adorning the sleeve, but also feature something the Bears hold near and dear: the presence and prominence of the GSH patch, which stands for George S. Halas, the franchise’s owner and a professional football pioneer.

Bears Chairman George McCaskey stated:

“Our family’s biggest concern was, we wanted to make sure the GSH on the left sleeve went back to its original size,” McCaskey said. “It had gotten smaller. Now, it’s restored to its original, 1984 size, so we’re very excited about that.”

Here’s a little before and after for you:

Brian Urlacher is looking fierce as always. Some subtle differences are in the sleeves and neckline. The NFL logo on the collar no longer has a white background. The stripes on the sleeves have been moved up, and the numbers are now on the shoulders instead of the sleeves. The shorter sleeves allow for less bagginess, in theory meaning less holding, which Urlacher believes will free up defensive end Julius Peppers for a wild season. I think my favorite touch is on the gloves, I’ve always been a sucker for accessories, check it out.

The biggest makeover happened for the Seattle Seahawks with some coloring changes, a patch look on the shoulders and what are allegedly feathers down the legs representing the 12th Man.

Cleanin’ House – Or Should I say Halas Hall?

Overhaul, that’s an appropriate description of what occurred to the Bears’ management staff Tuesday. General manager Jerry Angelo, gone. Offensive coordinator Mike Martz, gone. Quarterbacks coach Shane Daly, gone. The only remaining survivor is Lovie Smith. After Tuesday’s press conference it’s rather clear who wears the pants in Lake Forest, Ted Phillips is running the Chicago Bears, not George McCaskey. Let us remember that Angelo was a Phillips hire. Should we be worried?

The biggest surprise of the day was Jerry’s termination, I think people expected Martz to leave or be fired. Angelo, relieved after 11 seasons, this 8-8 season not being the best for his legacy, did accumulate 4 division titles and one Super Bowl appearance. Chairman George McCaskey spoke about needing to close a talent gap with the division-rival Packers and Lions – we have to pickup the offensive pace. Angelo had a track record of extremely poor drafts, specifically on offense, and it caught up to him. After 10 drafts, only two first-round picks even remain on the roster, and offensive linemen Gabe Carimi and Chris Williams finished the season on injured reserve. Before Matt Forte‘s success this season, Angelo had yet to have an offensive draft pick make a Pro Bowl.

Phillips said the new general manager will have one restriction: Smith, who is signed through 2013, must be the coach in 2012. Looks like the Bears not wanting to pay-out Smith saved him his job for at least another year. Phillips also said Smith will be involved in the process of hiring his new boss.

According to a league source, the Bears have some considered GM candidates in conference as well as around the league.

Packers college scouting director John Dorsey and football operations director Reggie McKenzie have both been groomed by the impressive organization. The Detroit Lions pro personnel director Sheldon White and Vikings director of player personnel George Paton are also considered strong GM candidates within the NFC states the Sun-Times.

Outside the division, the Bears are sure to discuss Bill Polian, a respected judge of talent throughout the league and was just let go by the Colts. Others popular names for GM openings include Les Snead, the director of player personnel for the Falcons, and Eric DeCosta, the director of player personnel for the Ravens.

The Chicago Bears have some rather stiff competition as they are not only team changing management, the Raiders, Rams and Colts also have vacancies.

The REAL question here is, do we trust Ted Phillips to secure and hire a successful general manager for the Bears? We will find out soon enough!