Start over? Stay the course? Chicago Bears GM Ryan Poles is nearing a series of landmark decisions

Dan Wiederer, Chicago Tribune on

Published in Football

CHICAGO — Certainly Ryan Poles knows the cameras are everywhere, his every move being watched. Analyzed. Interpreted. Debated.

Before Monday’s road matchup against the Minnesota Vikings, Poles was doing his usual pregame speed-walk around the perimeter of the field when he crossed paths with Justin Fields, who was on his way to the locker room. Without breaking stride, Poles gave his quarterback a fist bump and, quite naturally, a Chicago television reporter caught the moment, delivering it promptly to Bears fans, including all the ravenous social media sleuths seeking clues on what the general manager might be considering.

Was there possibly anything in Poles’ stride or Fields’ facial expression to decode?

In the third quarter of the Bears’ 12-10 victory, the ESPN broadcast zoomed in on Poles, this time inside a U.S. Bank Stadium suite after a first down running play to Roschon Johnson. Briefly, the GM shook his head and circled his right index finger in a bit of a “hustle up” gesture. Instantly, 137 more conclusions were drawn.

Clearly, Poles is unnerved with the play calling of offensive coordinator Luke Getsy, right? Perhaps he needs Fields and the offense to step up the tempo.

Or maybe this is the GM’s way of trying to get the rest of the regular season over to get on to more pressing matters?


Later, inside a jubilant Bears locker room moments after the late-game rally, Poles found Fields and gave him such a forceful bear hug that he lifted the 227-pound quarterback 8 inches off the ground. The team videographer captured that celebratory fun and well …

Seriously, does this look like a GM unhappy with his quarterback? Didn’t that feel like the energized embrace of a duo wanting to stay together for a long, long time?

Professional lip readers and body language experts stand by. Your services will remain in high demand. Heck, maybe soon we should request a scan of Poles’ brain and link up the requisite AI technology to truly learn what he’s thinking. Can’t hurt to try, right?

A world of possibility


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