Forgone Conclusion

The future of Dick Jauron has been in since the day Jerry Angelo became the teams GM, but now even his players know it's only a matter of time before his tenure is over.

"He's a great man, so you'd like to think the best for him," said tight end Desmond Clark. "But it's a business and from everything that I hear, it's almost a foregone conclusion (he will be fired) unless we win out the next six out of seven or seven out of seven. I'm quite sure he knows the situation. We all know the situation, but we can't control it."

In the final seven weeks of the season, the Bears don't play a team with a worse record than the Lions team they lost to on Sunday, so their chances of winning six more times appear slim. Three of the Bears' remaining opponents are in first place or tied for first place in their respective divisions.

"Whatever happens will happen. The only way we affect anything is to win football games, so our whole focus has to be on the next week the next opponent, which is a good way (to keep your focus)," Jauron said.

Although Dick Jauron and his staff have another year remaining on their current contracts, at 3-6 another four double-digit loss season out of five is all but a lock and would presumably spell the end of the era.

"It is a very immediate business," Jauron said. "You're very happy in the difference of 45 seconds and a field goal. You're either very happy the next day or you're not very happy at all. You're very down for a week."

The Bears have been down more often than not this year. Each unit has taken their turns with poor play. The defense allowed 17 yards on 20 Lions carries, but the offense managed just 10 points against Detroit.

"I feel sorry for coach Jauron and Greg," Phillip Daniels said. "The coaches are doing a good job putting the game plans together for us. Sometimes we as players mess it up.

"I can only speak for the defense and Greg's doing a (heck) of a job, considering where we started and now where we're at. We had a bunch of young guys that were just trying to gel and fit in proper gaps and do all the things we need to do on defense and now we're there, we're at that point.

"We're getting better every week and guys like Alex (Brown) and Mike Haynes are getting better. We've got Keith Traylor back, we've got some people that we need."

The tone of the team changed with two victories over bottom of the barrel teams, but a demoralizing defeat at the hands of Lions squashed the Bears hallucination of a playoff run.

"We know at this point in our season we've dug ourselves a hole," Jauron said. "But if we can get totally focused on (the Rams) and fight our way to win a game (Sunday) and then go on to the next one, then the long term will take care of itself. (But) in our business, we're not going to have a lot of opportunities."

For Jauron it looks be too late.

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