End of Lovie Smith Era for Chicago Bears?

Christopher Bremner@bremquestCorrespondent IJanuary 2, 2010

CHICAGO - DECEMBER 13: Head coach Lovie Smith of the Chicago Bears waits for a challenge call during a game against the Green Bay Packers at Soldier Field on December 13, 2009 in Chicago, Illinois. The Packers defeated the Bears 21-14. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

In 95 games as Bears head coach, Lovie Smith is 51-44, and the third winningest coach since the team was founded in 1919. 

However, after three straight seasons without a playoff birth, the fans as well as the press are calling for a change.  If the history of hiring head coaches in Chicago is any indication, nothing will improve.

In 91 years of franchise history, the Chicago Bears have NEVER hired a head coach.  They have merely hired 13 head coach candidates with no head coaching experience in the NFL.

To break it down, unless you count George "Papa Bear" Halas, who was re-appointed on three different occasions following his head coaching debut in 1920, all the Bears have done is given chances to a lot of rookie head coaches, instead of bringing in a proven winner.

If the Chicago Bears fire Lovie Smith, which at this point seems inevitable, he will go elsewhere and lead a different team to success.  If he stays in Chicago, they will falter a while longer, and Bear-Nation will be disgusted.  Fact of the matter is, Lovie Smith led the Chicago Bears to a super bowl, the closest they have come to a championship since Mike Ditka did it in 1985-86.

"I'm evaluating myself too," Bears General Manager Jerry Angelo said in a recent interview. "But I do know this: We all share into what happened this year. I'm not going to sit here and put blame on any one thing.”

Two reasons the Bears have stumbled the past two seasons are simple; Ron Rivera was fired, and Ron Turner remains.  Yes, both can be blamed on Lovie Smith.  With no good draft picks coming up and some very questionable personnel, the Bears have found themselves once again in a building transition, or to be blunter, screwed.

Defeating a lousy Detroit Lions team Sunday will not in any way ensure a job for Lovie Smith or his staff.  If they do anything but dominate, it will only give fans and ownership more ammunition to rid the inconsistent coaching staff. 

"What's a vote of confidence at this time? ...You don't talk about things like that during the year," Lovie Smith said in response to questions about his status next year as coach. "(We're) disappointed in our play, disappointed in our record. I'm the head football coach, so I'm sure a lot of people aren't knocking down the door wanting to pat me on the back."

It has yet to be seen if newspaper ads, billboards, or numerous blogs have swayed the Bears' administration to vacate the entire coaching staff and management, but if it has, let’s hope for yet not another huge embarrassing failure.