Around the NFL  

 

Tracy Porter: Bears not folding on 2016 season

Print

Fans and pundits like to talk about the concept of NFL teams tanking for a higher draft pick, but good luck finding a player or coach who thinks that way.

While the Bears loom as a shoe-in for a top-five selection in next year's draft, veteran cornerback Tracy Porter laughed off the idea that some sort of conspiracy has been hatched in the Windy City to lose out.

"Well that's why they're not in this locker room," Porter said of anyone doubting the team's desire to win, per ESPN.com. "That's why they're on the outside looking in. That's something that we're not going to do. We're not just going to fold over a season. We're going to continue to work and continue to get better."

There's no such thing as tanking in the NFL. Especially in Chicago, where coach John Fox needs to show management and the city that he can turn this team around.

"I am proud to be part of an organization and part of a league where players and coaches give 100 percent effort in every game," Hall of Fame front-office talent Bill Polian said during the Colts' 2-14 season in 2011. "Maybe that's why we're such a popular sport."

Without Peyton Manning on the field, that Polian-led Colts team "successfully" secured the No. 1 overall pick, which turned into quarterback Andrew Luck.

Polian, though, wholly dismissed the idea that anyone inside the building would accept losing games on purpose for a springtime draft selection.

"How can you build an organization with a culture of winning and look players in the eye and tell them to give their best effort every day but this one?" Polian told TheMMQB's Peter King at the time. "And I'll remind you it was about 13 years ago, maybe midway through the (1998) season when Ryan Leaf and Peyton Manning were rookies, that Leaf was the second coming and Peyton was the bust. In other words, like Brian Billick says, 'Nobody knows anything about the draft.' I'm in the middle of scouting this year's prospects, and I can tell you I don't know anything -- yet."

The same applies to the two-win Bears, one-win 49ers and winless Browns. Coaches aren't wired to coast and players know that every game could decide their NFL future.

"The only thing you can do, you look at every game as a one-game opportunity," said Bears defensive coordinator Vic Fangio. "We've got a chance to go to New York (to play the Giants on Sunday), go with whoever we've got and go give it our best shot and play good. Even if we were 7-2 versus 2-7, I wouldn't be thinking about playoffs and ramifications and this game, that game. I'm a one-game-at-a-time guy, one-series-at-a-time guy, one-play-at-a-time guy. I try and instill that in the players and then we see what happens after that."

Said Fangio: "We're not gonna get caught up in the highs and the lows of this profession, try not to."

Print

Fan Discussion